There are few in this mares’ handicap hurdle who often race handily and that could see Tom Harney be able to control the pace on Gotthenod who I think could bounce back from a poor run last time.

On that occasion at Ballinrobe, she was shaken along early on and couldn’t immediately get into a very prominent position as Kitty Galore went clear. Gotthenod ended up racing towards the front of the chasing group behind the runaway leader but she never seemed comfortable and was beaten a long way out.

Prior to that, she had won a handicap hurdle at this course with Tom Harney in the saddle. That was over 3m and after tracking the leaders from an early stage, she eased to the front turning the final bend and never looked in danger of being caught, winning by 2½ lengths.

She showed earlier in the year that she can run well over this sort of trip when winning at Kilbeggan over 2m3f and, given she doesn’t look completely straightforward, I think having Harney backing in the saddle is a positive for her chance as he clearly got a good tune out of her in those two victories.

It may be that Gotthenod will once again not travel with much fluency early on and she might need headgear at some time but I’m hoping that she will be able to make the running and set a good pace to make use of her proven stamina. Any 8/1 or bigger appeals.

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