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Kempton and Wolverhampton previews: Barrakilla the one to beat

| 25.01.2016

David Metcalf | January 25, 2016

Barrakilla primed to get back on the scoresheet

Barrakilla has shaped well in two starts this season and can get back to winning ways in the 2m 4f handicap chase at Kempton today (15.45) now stepped back up in trip.

The Evan Williams trained gelding opened his account over the larger obstacles at the third time of asking when driven out to beat Persian Snow by 2 1/2 lengths in a 2m 4f novice chase on soft ground at Warwick back in December 2012.

Barrakilla was then on the sidelines for 312 days before making a highly promising handicap debut at Sandown when third of 14 to Sound Investment off an opening mark of 134.

The nine-year-old went on to run a stormer to finish a runner-up to Niceonefrankie in the class 1 Caspian Caviar Gold Cup at Cheltenham off a mark of 135, and shaped better than his position suggest when a creditable 13th of 24 to The Druids Nephew at the Cheltenham Festival last March.

Barrakilla was then off the track for 275 days before shaping is if needing the run when a not knocked about second to Balgarry at Taunton last month.

The son of Milan backed that up with a staying on fourth to Bold Henry in a competitive 2m contest at Sandown, leaving the impression he was crying out for a step back up to 2m 4f.

Kempton Races

Barakilla gets that today, and with underfoot conditions holding no fears looks weighted to take all the beating off a rating of 136.

Debdebdeb can collect on debut for Skelton

In the 2m handicap hurdle (16.20), Debdebdeb can take advantage of what looks a handy mark to make a winning debut for trainer Dan Skelton.

The mare was a useful sort on the level and rated 91 at her peak when trained by Andrew Balding, and after joining Donald McCain opened her account over the obstacles at the second time of asking when showing a good attitude to beat Allez Encore by 1/2 a length at Catterick.

Debdebdeb was allotted an opening handicap mark of 118 on the back of that success, but shaped as if amiss off it when a distant third at Sedgefield last April.

The six-year-old now makes her first start for Skelton off 3lb lower, and has joined a yard that have done well with similar types.

Debdebdeb also goes well fresh and has won twice after lengthy lay-offs in the past, and everything looks in place for a huge run.


13.05: Ride On Time
13.35: Wait For Me
14.10: Authorized Too
14.40: Onenightinvienna
15.10: A Hare Breath
15.45: Barrakilla
16.20: Debdebdeb (NB)

Next Edition weighted to strike at Wolverhampton

Next Edition can take advantage of a drop in the weights and score and overdue success in the 1m 5f handicap at Wolverhampton today (15.25) now partnered by in-form apprentice Phil Dennis for the first time.

The Phil Kirby trained eight-year-old is on a long losing run, having not scored since landing a class 4 contest at Musselburgh back in May 2013 by 3 1/4 lengths off a mark of 76.

However, the gelding has run well to make the frame on numerous occasions and is now able to race in this class 5 affair off a reduced rating of just 61.

That is a massive 15lb lower than when last successful, and although not at his best last time out Next Edition had previously hinted that his time was near in two runs over course and distance.

After finishing 1 1/2 length third to With Hindsight when getting little assistance in the saddle from a very inexperienced rider, Next Edition failed by just a head to overhaul the same rival next time up.

Next Edition

The son of Antonius Pius was arguably given too much to do in the latter, but it was a fine effort and Next Edition now gets the services of Dennis in the saddle who has ridden three winners from his last nine mounts and is beginning to look good value for his 7lb claim.

Torres ticks all the right boxes

Hernando Torres has a good record at the venue and looks decent value to further enhance it with victory in the 1m 1f handicap (17.00).

The Mick Easterby trained gelding has won two of his seven starts at the track and also ran well to make the frame on two other occasions.

In the last of those successes two outings ago, Hernando Torres raced prominently throughout before taking up the running three from home to pull clear and score readily by 3/4 of a length.

The eight-year-old is now able to race off just 2lb higher, having run really well over 1m 2f at Chelmsford earlier in the month when third to Buckland Beau.

Hernando Torres held every chance until being unable to find any extra inside the final furlong, and the drop back in trip and return to this venue look sure to suit.


14.20: Ashford Island
14.50: Israfel
15.35: Next Edition (NAP)
16.00: Gabrial The Terror
16.30: Jive Time
17.00: Hernando Torres (NB)
17.30: Solar Deity
18.00: Mr Chocolate Drop


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David Metcalf

A lifelong Manchester United supporter, David has over 25 years’ experience in the media industry having worked for regional and national newspapers. He is a huge horse racing, football and greyhound fan and has done interviews on various radio and TV stations, including talkSPORT and Sky Sports, whilst working as a PR front man for a betting firm. David has also written for most of the top Premier League football fan websites, and produced a Cheltenham Festival guide with former eight-times champion national hunt jockey Peter Scudamore, MBE, after helping him to set up a syndicate for his trainer son Michael.