Value Scope: Steve Jones’ racing tips for Ascot and Haydock on Saturday


It’s Betfair Chase day at Ascot and our tipster has three selections, including a mudlark who won at Uttoxeter last time out. At Haydock he went for an 11-1 shot

Steve Jones has four selections for Saturday February 19

Bring the bowl to Begg the bookmakers for some value at Ascot.

BALLYBEGG (3.00) should make our efforts pay off after cutting through the mud to win at Uttoxeter last time out.

It didn’t work out for him in two starts over fences earlier in the season and the blinkers he wore when he returned to the hurdles at Christmas seem to have done the trick.

The form of this Uttoxeter win is good and young jockey Daire McConville is exceptionally good for his 10lb weight. Have 2pts each way at 10-1 and make sure you are with one of the five-place paying bookmakers.

The big race of the day, the Betfair Ascot Chase, is a tight affair but LOSTINTTRANSLATION (3.38) looks way too expensive.

He won at this course and this distance earlier in the season and it’s not worth worrying about his ordinary effort from King George as he never ran well in this race.

It’s only been a few years since he finished third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and that proven stamina will come in handy as there’s likely to be good pace early on. Have 1pt each way at 14-1.

Lostintranslation seems too expensive for the Ascot Chase


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Earlier on the map, FORTESCUE (2.25) should like the testing conditions.

The pursuer of Henry Daly remains very well and he has been in good form recently. His third behind Gold Cup hopeful Royale Pagaille at Haydock last month, when his jumping was excellent, was probably his best effort to date.

This distance is the minimum for him so I expect jockey Hugh Nugent to ride him a bit more prominently this time to help put his stamina on the line. Having 1pt each way at 11-1 with William Hill paying on four places.

I’m crossing my fingers that Haydock’s card will pass the morning inspection because our old friend LORD DU MESNIL (2.40) will love the heavy conditions.

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This William Hill Grand National Trial is his race.

He won it last year after finishing second in that 3m4f marathon contest 12 months earlier.

He’s only a pound heavier in the weights this time and he’s just dancing in the mud at Haydock.

This extreme test is exactly what he wants, so I expect him to recover from last month’s below-average run on shorter. Having 1 pt each way at 12-1 with multiple bookmakers paying in four places.

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