Antolini an appealing punt at 12s in Betfair Exchange Hurdle

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© 2012 Daily Sport Limited

Mr Antolini makes plenty of appeal at 12/1 in the Betfair Exchange Hurdle at Ascot today (3.35) now dropped back in distance from what looks a fair mark on the pick of his form following two promising efforts this season.

The eight-year-old has progressed at a rate of knots since joining trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies at the beginning of the year, winning twice and posting some solid efforts in defeat.

In the last of those successes, the gelding held on gamely to beat Call Me Lord by a neck in the ultra-competitive 20-runner Grade 2 Imperial Cup over 2m at Sandown.

Call Me Lord, from whom Mr Antolini was receiving 22lb, went on to beat very smart staying hurdler Lil Rockerfeller by 16 lengths in a Grade 2 at the same venue next time up and is favouriye for the Grade 2 JLT Hurdle on this card.

The sixth home Silver Streak, who was rated just 3lb higher than the selection going into the race, has since landed the valuable Swinton Handicap here and the Welsh Champion Hurdle at Ffos Las off a mark of 139 before finishing runner-up in the Grade 2 International Hurdle at Cheltenham last weekend to be rated 156.

That gives the form a rock solid look and Mr Antolini comes into the race following two decent runs. In the first of those he a fifth of 20 to First Assignment over 2m 5f at Cheltenham.

Mr Antolini backed that up with a fine staying on 3/4 length second to Black Mischief over 2m 3f at Haydock. He has been raised 3lb for that but a revsied rating of 141 still looks workable – especially on his run in the aformentioned Imperial Cup.

It’s also very inetresting that he now drops back down to 2m. Mr Antolini has a 25 per cent strike rate over the trip having won three times and been placed on four ocassions from 12 starts.

Daily Sport recommended bet: 2pts each-way Mr Antolini (12/1 generally available – use BOG firms)

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