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Varian's 2/1 chance can bounce back to winning form at Doncaster - Get horse racing tips for Sunday, March 31

Brian Healy 31 Mar 2019
Ascot are racing on Sunday over the sticks.

Brian Healy gives his race-by-race selections and best bets for Sunday's UK and Irish horse racing meetings.

The week and month of March ends with a three-fixture schedule of horse racing action which takes in afternoon flat racing action on turf from the card at Doncaster where is it day two of the curtain-raising Lincoln meeting as the UK Flat racing season on turf continues.

There is also jumps racing from Ascot, as well as from Limerick in Ireland where there is Grade Three action on their card.

Limerick (jumps) - 1.50 - 5.15pm (7 races)
Doncaster (flat) - 2.00 - 5.30pm (7 races)
Ascot (jumps) - 2.10 - 5.40pm (7 races)



(2.20) MAZE RUNNER (3/1, William Hill) was a winner on the flat for this yard back in October last year at Galway, after which he made a successful transition to hurdling with a defeat of Union Gap at Cork in December.

Willie Mullins’ Authorized gelding may have found the run coming too soon next time at Leopardstown when finishing seventh to Rocky Blue on Boxing Day; but he bounced back on his last outing to find only Fred Winter Hurdle winner Band Of Outlaws too strong at Naas last month.

He finished ahead of the runner-up in that Festival race, Coko Beach, and a repeat of that effort having been freshened up ought to be good enough to see him collect the first prize here.

(2.55) CUT THE MUSTARD (13/8, William Hill) ran better than the bare form when finishing in midfield in the County Hurdle, and Willie Mullins’ charge could get back on the scoresheet here.

The Al Namix mare had finished runner-up on each of her previous two outings at Leoaprdstown, which included behind Sassy Diva in a first-time hood; that form has worked out quite well and she ought to appreciate returning to this level and taking on her own sex.

This should prove a more suitable contest than that Cheltenham assignment, and if running up to her mark then it wouldn’t be a surprise to see her going close here.

1.50 - Fiveallin
2.20 - Maze Runner
2.55 - Cut The Mustard
3.30 - Mutadaffeq
4.05 - Burrows Saint
4.40 - Goulane Chosen
5.15 - Barnes Des Mottes


(2.35) FRANZ KAFKA (4/1, William Hill) showed plenty of ability on his debut at Newmarket last October, finishing third to Turgenev despite appearing to have needed the experience; John Gosden’s charge subsequently failed to back up that run next time at Newbury, but he wasn’t beaten far nonetheless, crossing the line in sixth place behind Landa Beach.

Only beaten three lengths, it was nonetheless not the best of performances and better was surely expected give he was sent off at odds-on for that outing. 

The Dubawi colt possibly was unsuited by the softer ground, and he could be worth chancing to bounce back here with the better ground likely to be more in his favour.

(3.45) WILLIE JOHN (2/1, William Hill) is given another chance having shaped as if amiss when failing to beat a rival home at Longchamp when last seen; Roger Varian’s charge can bounce back here.

The Dansili colt made a good impression on his first start for William Haggas when beating Humbolt Current on debut at Yarmouth, after which he was switched to this yard following an expensive purchase price paid by connections.

He went some way to instantly justifying his pricetag with a smooth defeat of Hidden Depths at this venue in August, after which he posted his disappointing run. However, it is too soon to write him off, and he remains an exciting prospect who could have much more to offer.

He can show better form here on his reappearance, and no surprise if he were to go close..

2.00 - Right Action
2.35 - Franz Kafka
3.10 - Royal Residence
3.45 - Willie John
4.20 - Hulcote
4.55 - Mister Chiang
5.30 - Gravity Wave


(2.45) PRAECEPS (6/1, William Hill) ran a big race in the recent Fred Winter Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, eventually finishing sixth behind Band Of Outlaws, and Alan King’s charge could go close here if this outing doesn’t come too soon.

The Canford Cliffs gelding was fair on the flat for Sir Mark Prescott prior to joining this yard, winning hree times which included his final start on the level, and he has shaped well in all outings over timber. He was a winner at Market Rasen in Feburary after which he lost little caste in defeat when finishing third in the Adonis Hurdle at Kempton.

He had a subsequent winner behind him that day, and he could be fairly treated off this mark stepping into a handicap. The relatively quick turnaround is a slight worry, but if he is none the worse for his Festival exertions then he ought to go close.

(3.20) FAVORITO BUCKS (6/4, William Hill) stepped up on his encouraging return to action at Exeter in November to post a course and distance win over Vice Et Vertu; and while Paul Nicholls’ charge hasn’t managed to back up that success, the Buck’s Boum gelding could be worth chancing to get back on the scoresheet returned here.

Sixth subsequently behind Valtor over this course and distance, he failed to fire at Sandown following a short break when last seen. But the ground on both those occasions was testing, and he ought to be better suited by this better ground.

Dropping back in trip also could prove to be a smart move, and with the handicapper relenting he could bounce back here.

2.10 - My Way
2.45 - Praeceps
3.20 - Favorito Bucks
3.55 - Capeland
4.30 - Loose Chips
5.05 - Faithful Mount
5.40 - Silvergrove

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Varian's 2/1 chance can bounce back to winning form at Doncaster - Get horse racing tips for Sunday, March 31

Brian Healy gives his race-by-race selections and best bets for Sunday's UK and Irish horse racing meetings.

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