Trainer Claire Dyson will be hoping for a second Towcester success within a fortnight when the Northamptonshire track stages its second February fixture on Wednesday when the first race is due off at 1.50pm.
Dyson, based at Froglands Farm Stud near Evesham in Worcestershire was successful with Cheat The Cheater in the 3m handicap chase under jockey Brendan Powell for winning partnership The Pink Fizz Fillies, who then proved admirably versatile when it came to sampling white champagne.
The nine year-old Flemensfirth gelding has been raised 7lbs in the weights to a new mark of 96 which could make life tough in what is likely to a competitive field - the six race card attracted an initial entry of 110 runners with 17 of those in this contest.
Recent course form counts for a lot at Towcester so no doubt Black Narcissus will also attract attention following the victory of Alexandra Dunn’s seven year-old here in January, even though the Westerner mare would be upped in trip from two and a half miles. Black Narcissus sandwiched her Towcester success in a novices’ handicap chase between victories at Plumpton and Leicester and would have to be considered a threat seeking a four timer if staying the extra distance while also conquering the Towcester hill.
County handler Ben Case is not having his most productive season so far in terms of winners, the frustration count being high for placed runners. However, he has given entries to Gamain and Bebinn which have both been runners-up at Towcester in the past. Bebinn has done this twice before and is chasing a win hat trick after two wins at Plumpton in January and February.
Meanwhile, Dyson’s attempt to add to an impressive Towcester ‘CV’ in recent seasons thanks to the likes of Musical Wedge and Quayside Court, might be solely restricted to Cheat The Cheater as she has entered Terra Firma in the opening novices’ hurdle and Memory Of Light in the 2m 3f handicap hurdle.
Memory Of Light appears to afford her best chance of this pair, as the grey Westerner gelding was seventh of 13 here at the last fixture, only fading in the closing stages.
Girl of the moment Lizzie Kelly could possibly make a Towcester appearance of either Me Voila runs in the opening novices’ hurdle or Dolores Delight tackles the 3m Aynho Mares’ Handicap Hurdle for her step father Nick Williams, the partnership grabbing all the headlines in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury on Saturday.
However, Kelly has yet to partner Dolores Delight in any of her runs in this country, that privilege falling to such a high profile range of jockeys such as Richard Johnson, Tony McCoy, Leighton Aspell and Daryl Jacob.