Melling Chase Betting Tips – Politologue the Aintree Punt to Regain Crown

Aintree Betting Tips · Friday, 09th Apr 2021 - 15:25

Nicholls and Hales grey clear on ratings

The big race on the Mildmay course during day two of the Grand National Festival this Friday is the 2m 4f Grade 1 Melling Chase (15:25), run under the sponsorship of Marsh. Politologue has finished first and second in the last two renewals of this, so appeals most. Trained by Paul Nicholls for owner John Hales, this popular grey gelding tops official figures for the contest.

Politologue goes well fresh and he’s had since January off the track, although that wasn’t the plan. He should have defended his Queen Mother Champion Chase crown at Cheltenham last month, but was a late withdrawal. Nicholls found blood in his nose when saddling Politologue.

Nothing came to light since, and his withdrawal was a precaution. Politologue toughed things out and held Min by a neck in the 2018 Melling Chase here. Although the winner reversed form 12 months later, he has become a real two-and-a-half miles specialist and later become the only horse ever to hit a hat-trick in the John Durkan at Punchestown.

Politologue profited from Altior’s absence when winning both last season’s Champion Chase and on reappearance in the Tingle Creek at Sandown. With 6lb and upwards in hand on his seven rivals, he has leading claims of a fifth Grade 1 success here. Politologue is 11/4 with bet365 for compensation after missing Cheltenham.

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Fakir D’Oudairies and Master Tommytucker both dangers

In keeping with top races at the meeting this year, there’s an open look to the Melling Chase. Ryanair Chase runner-up Fakir D’Oudairies represents the best of Cheltenham form in the contest, if coming over from Ireland. Trained by Joseph O’Brien for the mighty JP McManus, I was all over him for the Devenish Chase at Fairyhouse on Easter Monday.

That race, where Fakir D’Oudairies was a previous course and distance winner, looked tailor-made for him. He was withdrawn from the Irish Grand National card, however, because of unsuitable ground. Conditions at Aintree could be even faster, so you can be forgiven for being skeptical. Fakir D’Oudairies is 100/30 with Betfred if turning up.

The biggest danger to Politologue may come from stable companion Master Tommytucker. Another among three Ditcheat inmates declared for the Melling Chase, this 10-year-old by Kayf Tara is the same age as the favourite, but much more lightly-raced.

Master Tommytucker has won three of six starts this season, but isn’t always the most fluent jumper. However, his 12-length win in the Silviniaco Conti Chase at Kempton has been advertised by the runner-up, Clondaw Castle, coming out and landing a Grade 3 handicap at that track since.

There were also excuses for a two-length defeat by the front-running Dashel Drasher in the Ascot Chase last time out. Master Tommytucker didn’t get a clear run after the final fence. A combination of the drop back in trip and better ground should suit him. With Sam Twiston-Davies again aboard, who is two from two on him, Master Tommytucker is 5/1 with Unibet for a breakthrough at the highest level.

Nuts Well solid each-way value in Melling Chase

The aforementioned Dashel Drasher recorded a memorable win at happy hunting ground Ascot last time out. As Grade 1 races go, however, these are deeper waters. The course and distance winning form of Nuts Well makes him better each-way value here. Another 10-year-old, this Ann Hamilton trained Dylan Thomas gelding gave 3lb and a beating to both Aye Right and then Clondaw Castle on his two starts in the autumn.

The runner-up from Kelso on Nuts Well’s reappearance, Aye Right, has since placed on all four chase starts. They include a third in the Charlie Hall at Wetherby and when runner-up to Grand National favourite Cloth Cap in the Ladbrokes Trophy around Newbury. Aye Right is also a leading contender for the Scottish National at Ayr next week.

Besides Clondaw Castle advertising course and distance form from the Old Roan Chase with the Kempton success noted above, the sixth and seven home have both won races since. Annie Mc, who finished in the latter place, has bolted up in two mares’ only events. Nuts Well is well worth a crack at this level, then.

Hamilton does really well with her small string, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if her horse at least hits the frame here. Nuts Well is 10/1 with Betfair to do just that under regular ride Danny McMenamin in the Melling Chase

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