Haydock 2.25

Haydock 2.25 - Handicap Hurdle - Group 3 Class 1 - 3 miles and 1/2 furlong - 16 run - Good to Soft
A strong field and hard to rule much out at all to be honest.
David Pipe who has a good record in the race and at the Course runs a pair at very big odds in Martinhal and Brinkley and neither can be taken lightly despite less than obvious form credentials so far and on seasonal debut.
Paul Nicholls runs STORM ARISING and at 25/1 it's not considered at all by the market. Off for 247 days is ran disappointingly at Cheltenham but prior to that had finished 1st / 2nd / 1st in decent races last season and off marks of 131 - 134 and 136, the first one off a 262 day break and given that form and its connections looks certainly worth a "shrapnel" bet here.
If we go through them in alphabetical order, Bass Rock is a real danger for a progressive Northern yard winning last twice impressively and bringing vital race fitness, but i think this requires a considerable step up. Dans Le Vent is back up to 3 miles for Evan Williams and has glimmers of form to give it a small chance. Doctor Duffy for Cliff Byrnes is a decent Irish horse who could be well handicapped and they try a visor and as we know never rule out an Irish dark horse.Flight Deck for Jonjo is similar to Bass Rock in that it's fit and has won already this season but in deeper here. Gladiateur Allen will surely need the run today on past form and Rightplacerighttime, another Irish raider looks over bet to me on all known form and Orbys Legend is interesting but also far too short in the market to be of interest for me; upped in trip and possibly needing the run.
RIGGS would bring the house down if winning in the Trevor Hemmings colours at one of his favourite tracks and the Skeltons are bang in form and as we saw last Sunday able to deliver a horse literally pitch perfect off any kind of break as they did for West Cork for us last Sunday. I think it's a bit skinny price wise but IF you want a win saver, please feel free, it could be one of those completely thrown in!
In terms of the main bets to augment the shrapnel on STORM ARISING; I was left with 3 at decent odds.
I think ASK DILLON is a ridiculous price considering the form of the yard. It's race fit having been highly tried in a very hot hurdle race and a hot Chase already this season. If you look closely though at its Handicap Hurdle form and that stamina and fitness angle it's last hurdle win was off 144, it was a close up 4th in this race last year and runs off a mark of 144 with a very handy 7lbs Claimer on board. Despite the Odds I'll be very disappointed if we don't pick up some enhanced place money.
I can't split the 2019 winner of this race STONEY MOUNTAIN who won this then off 138, has won recently and arrives off a mark of 142 today as a result, and the very consistent horse it just beat last time DIDTHEYLEAVEUSOUTTO who I can't leave out here off the back of 2 impressive runner up efforts off 129 and 134 and who looks a progressive staying hurdler to me.

TIP - ASK DILLON / Trackers - Stoney Mountain + Didtehyleaveusoutto (shrapnel - Storm Arising)