Inside Track: What better way to spend a winter’s day, than at a high class jumps meet?

Trainer Nicky Henderson

Trainer Nicky Henderson

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Is there anything better on a winter’s day than being at home snuggled up in front of the fire, with some cheese and mulled wine?

Well, yes there is actually, and it is all that - but after a day at the races!

On Saturday afternoon, we host a jumps meeting of a high standard, with the BetVictor Grade Two Summit Juvenile Hurdle the feature race.

The early entries are strong and are headed by the likeable Nicky Henderson-trained Royal Irish Hussar, who is unbeaten over hurdles in three starts after wins at Market Rasen, Wetherby and Cheltenham.

The Northern brigade is headed by Dispour from the Donald McCain stable who was a very easy winner of a race at Musselburgh a fortnight ago.

There are a couple of very interesting Flat recruits entered, both from the John Ferguson yard, in the shape of Commissioned and Broughton.

Commissioned was a dual winner on the Flat from just three starts for Mark Johnston. Commissioned looked thoroughly progressive and was rated 97 on the Flat, which suggests if he takes to hurdling, he could be a serious horse.

Broughton hailed from the same yard in Mark Johnston but has had much more racing for his age than his former stablemate.

However, he is a winner at Glorious Goodwood and was 89 rated on the level.

We also have a potential German challenger in Cafe Au Lait.

His trainer, Christian Von Der Recke, has enjoyed plenty of success over many years in this country and although this horse probably has a bit to find on his Warwick second on hurdling debut, he is still an interesting contender and merits a second look.

On the undercard, recent impressive course winner Off The Ground will take plenty of beating in the 2.40 contest, despite being risen 15lbs by the handicapper.

As well as the Summit Hurdle, the final race, the BetVictor-sponsored handicap chase looks a very open affair, just like last year’s race which ended with the first five horses being separated by just over a length. Let’s hope for a reproduction!

Racing starts at 11.55 so delay that shopping trip, leave the Christmas cards and come racing. We have some great hospitality packages on offer if you want to treat yourself, friends, family or clients over the festive period.

If you fancy getting out of the house between Christmas and New Year, we’re also offering a great value ‘Sprout-Free’ family package for the December 29 raceday. See our website for more details.

You can book raceday tickets and hospitality packages online at www.doncaster-racecourse.co.uk.