Exeter betting tips: Crooks Peak and San Benedeto among fancies on Haldon Gold Cup day

Horsebetting.com give Exeter betting tips for November 6 and a seven-race card at the Devon venue. Crooks Peak rates the NAP of this meeting in the extended 2m novices’ hurdle. In the feature Grade 2 Haldon Gold Cup over an extended 2m 1f, San Benedeto looks worth a bet to enhance trainer Paul Nicholls’ superb race record. Leith Hill Lad is a course and distance winner, so makes each-way appeal in the 3m handicap chase later on for in-form trainer Charlie Longsdon. For more on this National Hunt meeting, read our detailed Exeter betting tips for November 6 below.

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Odds
1/1
NAP
Crooks Peak
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Odds
6/1
NB
San Benedeto
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Odds
9/1
E/W
Leith Hill Lad
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Crooks Peak appeals most at Exeter

Crooks Peak looks worth a punt now returned to a much sounder surface in the extended 2m novices’ hurdle on Haldon Gold Cup day a Exeter (13:35). The five-year-old represents in-form trainer and jockey combination Philip Hobbs and Richard Johnson, and has arguably put his best performance to date in on good ground.

After winning on debut by a comfortable six lengths at Newton Abbot, Crooks Peak was stepped up to Listed level for another bumper at Cheltenham during the November meeting. While he handled cut in the ground when ridden out to score by 1 1/2 lengths, it’s the form that looks good as the runner-up won at Haydock next time up.

The third horse home was then second to the exciting Acey Milan and the sixth, Skidoosh won a recent novice hurdle race at Wetherby to boost things even further. While Crooks Peak then struggled in the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival, the ground was very soft and he still shape with the impression that he’d make a jumper.

Connections turned him out on heavy going on reappearance and hurdles debut back at Newton Abbot in October, but he looked held approaching the last as conditions sapped his stamina. Crooks Peak lost third close home and was beaten 6 1/4 lengths by Colonel Custard, but going on better ground should see him in a much better light.

Despite the presence of a respected race rival in the in-form Jamie Snowden trained Some Day Soon, it’s Crooks Peak who is taken on this going to resume winning ways and to break the maiden tag over hurdles. He thus rates the NAP of our Exeter betting tips for November 6.

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San Benedeto weighted to go one better in Haldon Gold Cup

Ditcheat handler Paul Nicholls has won the Haldon Gold Cup a record six times, including two of the last three renewals. He’s double-handed in this year’s extended 2m 1f Grade 2 feature handicap (14:05), with clear preference being San Benedeto, who was second 12 months ago.

The seven-year-old has has a 33 per cent strike rate over fences from 18 career outings and placed on seven other occasions. San Benedeto progressed through novice handicaps in 2016-17 and that campaign culminated in Grade 1 glory at Aintree’s Grand National meeting.

Although benefitting from a faller at the last, it was still a superb ride from Nick Schofield to get up close home and just touch Forest Bihan off by a head. Connections then took aim at the Celebration Chase during Sandown’s jumps finale where San Benedeto was a far from disgraced 12 1/2 lengths third to the awesome Altior.

While he went throughout last season without a win, that does not tell the full story as he continued to be highly tried and ran a number of solid races in defeat. Talented stablemate Politologue bounced back from his Aintree fall when a commanding winner of this last year, but San Benedeto still stuck to the task gamely to chase him home when beaten just 2 1/4 lengths and the front two pulled a further 25 lengths clear of the rest.

That gives the form a solid look and he races in this year’s renewal, which is not as deep on paper, off the same mark of 155. While Bryony Frost only claims 3lb aboard San Benedeto this time instead of 5lb, it still gives him every chance at the weights in an event his handler loves to plunder.

Since the Haldon Gold Cup of 2017, he has ran in three Grade 1s, showing spirit when beaten just three lengths and chasing Altior home in the last of those in the Celebration Chase at Sandown back in April. That sets a clear standard in the context of this lower grade contest and, taking Frost’s claim into account, San Benedeto is 4lb and 5lb better off with re-opposing duo God’s Own and stable companion Diego Du Charmil respectively.

While then a 10 3/4 lengths third to Ozzie The Oscar – another who re-opposes – at Warwick in May, that came after a lengthy campaign. San Benedeto has since had a spin over hurdles when returning to action at Listed level around Kempton and wasn’t knocked about by Frost when he it was clear he couldn’t win.

Nicholls admitted that was a prep run for this; so, with proven form on good ground and trainer and jockey in decent form, it’s San Benedeto who is readily taken to win the Haldon Gold Cup. He is thus the next best bet among these Exeter betting tips for November 6.

Leith Hill Lad worth an each-way wager

Another handler and rider pair in form is Charlie Longsdon and Jonathan Burke, so them teaming up with Leith Hill Lad looks significant in the class 3 handicap chase over 3m (15:15). The eight-year-old is a course and distance winner with a 25 per cent strike rate over fences who looks worth an each-way punt on the pick of his form.

Leith Hill Lad was a three-length third to the useful Play The Ace on his second start of last season at Stratford and, given the winner came out and won his next three, that does not look too shabby. Although then pulled up next time out on his first chase over this trip, he got it on soft going at Kempton when scoring by 1 1/4 lengths under this jockey two appearances later.

A career best over course and distance then followed for Leith Hill Lad as he stayed on strongly after being produced at the last for an eight-length success. Those back-to-back victories saw him go up a stone in the weights, but the manner of his victory here suggests an eased mark of 124 may not be beyond him.

While not so good when last of five at Hereford on reappearance, Leith Hill Lad is sure to come on for that run. With the re-opposing Scoop The Pot to contend with, our Exeter betting tips for November 6 suggest backing him each-way with the dead eight set to go to post.

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