‘Deadly Double’ Thursday, January 7

‘Deadly Double’ Thursday, January 7  Thursday’s Newcastle fixture has been abandoned leaving Towcester as the only National Hunt meeting of the day but, even so, we have two quite strong fancies that we hope can start the New Year with a bang.

The first of them, Eminent Poet (1.35), carries no penalty for winning a conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle, over 2 miles 3 furlongs, at Taunton eight days ago and shouldn’t be inconvenienced by dropping back in distance on a testing track. That win confirmed the promise of his previous third of six, beaten 13 lengths, behind subsequent winner Dormouse over 2 miles at Lingfield and he appears to have an obvious chance of completing a double.

The second, Rosa Fleet (2.05), wasn’t beaten far off her current mark at Bangor last month and should appreciate the steep climb to the home turn at Towcester and the continuing rise past the winning post. Venetia Williams’ mare remains 1lb lower in the weights than her last winning mark over hurdles and is fully effective on soft going, so she looks a decent bet to bring up a double for the Herefordshire trainer and, of course, for this column!

Selections: Towcester 1.35 Eminent Poet, Towcester 2.05 Rosa Fleet (win double)