Welsh National Domination
Another cracking Welsh National with the betting public heavily involved on the favourite Secret Reprieve.
The Evan Williams trained favourite is 8lbs well in, as his future handicap mark is 142 following his win in the Welsh National trial race here last month. He has a big chance but at the prices we look elsewhere as you need plenty of luck to win a Welsh National. We back two similarly unexposed young chasers who have proven form on heavy ground.
Dominateur looks just the type to step forward over this marathon trip. As a hurdler he finished third to Secret Reprieve over 2m3.5f on heavy ground at Chepstow doing his best work at the finish. Chasing has seen Dominateur improve such as when he won twice at Chepstow over just short of three miles in December 2019. His form tailed off following his novice chases win on Welsh National day but that can happen with novices.
The fact he ran in the Uttoxeter Midlands National won by Truckers Lodge shows that trainer Oliver Sherwood believes he will stay a marathon trip. Dominateur is fresh having just had one race this season when third to Pym at Sandown in a listed chase. The ground was good that day which was not ideal as Dominateur loves the mud. Gavin Sheehan rides the eight-year-old who has a nice low weight of 10-8.
Captain Drake is worth chancing at a huge price. He finished runner up to Truckers Lodge in the Midlands National despite coming to a standstill following a final fence blunder. Bryan Carver did really well to keep the partnership intact and is great value for this 3lb claim. Truckers Lodge finished second in last years Welsh National before going on to win the Midlands National. Captain Drake meets Truckers Lodge on 13lbs better terms so has a good shot at beating Truckers Lodge today.
Captain Drake won nicely this season over hurdles at Uttoxeter showing the ability and enthusiasm for the game remains. We can forgive him his flop at Cheltenham as he failed to jump well and clearly didn’t enjoy that course. His latest run in the Welsh National trial was a confidence booster without giving the horse a hard race. On heavy ground Captain Drake as a record of two wins and a second outside of that Welsh National Trial run. He carries 10-4 and wears a first-time tongue tie. Fingers crossed he is on a going day as he should relish this trip on testing ground.
Chepstow - 3:10
1/2 Point EACH WAY Dominateur (16/1 William Hill & Ladbrokes, both paying 5 places)
1/2 Point EACH WAY Captain Drake (40/1 Paddy Power & Betfair SB, both 6 places)