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ITV Racing Tips at Leopardstown and Doncaster: Thursday's top tips for the terrestrial racing

Water Jump Generic Leicester

The quality action particularly at Leopardstown just keeps coming in this period between Christmas and New Year's Day. On Thursday we'll be treated to some stars of the jumping game, with the highlight being the Matheson Hurdle. Billy Grimshaw has three tips for the action, with one in the big race and another over at Doncaster... 

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13:10 Leopardstown - BeattheBank.ie Irish EBF Mares Hurdle

There's a belting clash of two of the best mares in training kicking off Thursday's ITV coverage from Leopardstown as Shewearsitwell takes on QUEENS BROOK. Gordon Elliott's runner just about shades favouritism at the moment from the Closutton charge and we think the market has called this one right. Shewearsitwell won by just a neck last time out over three miles and looked to need every yard of the trip, so stepping back down for a test against one with as much pace as Queens Brook could be troubling for her.

Queens Brook's second in last season's Mares Hurdle to Maries Rock is probably the strongest piece of form coming into this contest, and her latest effort when cruising to an easy Punchestown win when long odds on was impressive. She has been a slow burner but seems to finally be hitting her prime and with the speed she possesses can streak away from her rivals and claim this Grade 3 with aplomb.

BeattheBank.ie Irish EBF Mares Hurdle
Queens Brook silk

Queens Brook

placed
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14:20 Leopardstown - Matheson Hurdle

Plenty of Champion Hurdle clues could be on show in this one, with short priced favourite State Man the likeliest rival to superstar Constitution Hill come Cheltenham. He is prohibitively priced for glory here and although he has been stunningly impressive on every outing since his County Hurdle win last March, another horse who impressed at the last festival looks the one to side with here at the prices.

Often in racing it is repeated that juvenile hurdlers stepping up to open company struggle in their first season. This is true, however for the very best ones they can defy trends and I think VAUBAN could be in the top bracket. He is blessed with a phenomenal change of gears and a Melbourne Cup was even mooted such was his pace. He has been hard to train and get right over the summer it seems due to the fact we haven't seen him until now, but Willie Mullins won't be sending him out if not happy with him and at 5/1 compared to 8/13 on his stablemate the favourite, he is definitely the value. Sharjah of course can't be ruled out for the same connections but I'll take a punt on potential here and back Vauban to stamp himself as Champion Hurdle class, as he looked in last season's Triumph.

Matheson Hurdle
Vauban silk

Vauban

placed
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15:10 Doncaster - bet365 Yorkshire Silver Vase Mares' Chase

PINK LEGEND had been a consistent type before disappointing last time out in her seasonal debut in the Peterborough Chase at Huntingdon. Her stable are in better form now though, however, and with that in mind she looks overpriced here. Favourite Zambella won this race last year and certainly looks as good as ever if her recent win at Carlisle is anything to go by, and Annie Mc was well beaten in behind her that day.

Back in February Pink Legend fell behind Zambella when looking beaten at Uttoxeter, but after that her performance in the Mares Chase when going down by just half a length to Elimay is in my opinion the best piece of form coming into this contest. Zambella was behind Venetia Williams' charge that day and at the prices it is worth siding with Pink Legend to again finish in front of the favourite and to bounce back from her poor showing at Huntingdon last time out.

bet365 Yorkshire Silver Vase Mares' Chase
Pink Legend silk

Pink Legend

lost
Today's Racing Tips
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