Larry's Lord should be worth supporting


ALL eyes will be on Alderbrook at Wincanton today but it may be more profitable to support Larry's Lord in the Ladbroke Handicap Chase. The course management are, optimistic of staging the prestige fixture despite the forecast of frost last night. There will be a 7.00 a.m. inspection this morning.

Larry's Lord was a slightly fortunate winner last time in, as much that his major market rival Easy Joker was travelling supremely well when tipping up halfway round.

But, even allowing for the lack of serious competition in the closing stages, Larry's Lord, with Tony McCoy on board, stayed on in a convincing fashion in the closing stages to go five lengths clear. Off just a 5lb higher mark here, he looks sure to go well.

Alderbrook, Kim Bailey's reigning Champion hurdler, limbers up for his first title defence in the K.J. Pike & Sons Kingwell Hurdle. There are some with the temerity to suggest a mere novice Rig ht Win, could provide an upset here, but make no mistake, Alderbrook is going to take some pegging back in the event.

Although Right Win was an impressive Winner of the Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown the bare facts of that form leave him with around 40lb to find with Alderbrook's Champion Hurdle effort.

Admittedly, Kim Bailey's charge has a bad injury and a long absence, to overcome but, the benefit of hindsight may show that a shade of odds on was the giveaway of the month.

The trainer has expressed himself pleased with the progress and fitness of Alderbrook in recent weeks and even though he has said he will come on for the run, it seems unlikely he is expected to perform so far below his ability.

Lusty Light has Barton Bank to beat in the Jim Ford Challenge Cup Chase. The latter has shown he retains his ability this season yet still has to convince many observers that he is at his best after Christmas.

There are doubts surrounding both his jumping and his propensity to break blood vessels and it seems worth taking a chance with Lusty Light at a better pi ice and in receipt of 6lb.

Jenny Pitman's gelding was looking sure to land the Fairlawne Chase at Windsor last weekend, but came a cropper when poking his nose in front three out.

At Lingfield, Michael Fenton looks to have a good chance of landing the Barnaby Rudge Claiming Stakes with Zuno Flyer. Arthur Moore's four year old has been consistent on his last few runs and with bottom weight to carry here, looks to have been given every chance to register a win.

. Huntingdon's fourth fixture loss of the current season today also goes into the statistical records as the 80th abandonment of the 1995-96 National Hunt campaign. Prospects look brighter for the weekend as there is a general thaw predicted from tomorrow onwards.

Richard Thomas, general manager at Haydock, was very hopeful of racing going ahead tomorrow and Saturday. Kempton and Doncaster are likewise pinning their hopes on warmer weather forecast for the next few days which, if arriving on cue, should enable them to go ahead, with their Saturday cards.