Alan King is having another troubled season, with stable stars Grumeti, Bensalem, Medermit and Invictus sidelined through injury but the Lambourn handler looks set for a timely fillip ahead of the major Spring festivals as Call Me A Star returns to Doncaster this afternoon.
The Midnight Legend mare, a Listed bumper winner at Sandown 12 months ago, has yet to fully deliver on the promise of her hurdling debut success at Uttoxeter in November but last month’s second to French import Utopie Des Bordes at this track was a step back in the right direction.
King is in confident mood going into the 32Red Casino E.BF Mares’ ‘National Hunt’ Novices’ Hurdle and said: “She was unlucky to come up against Utopie Des Bordes last time and, though the race conditions made our task nigh impossible, she ran an absolute blinder to be beaten only two lengths.
“The winner is rated 19lb higher, yet we had to give her 6lb, so it was a terrific effort, especially as Utopie Des Bordes has since won a Listed race Sandown.
“Call Me A Star will appreciate the drying ground, and, having schooled well on Monday morning, I hope she will take a lot of beating.”
King also saddles Miss Exhibitionist in the concluding Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association Mares’ Handicap Hurdle and, although not a leading light at Barbury Castle, she is a major player at this level back on decent ground.
Keith Reveley hopes to be doubly represented in Doncaster’s William Hill – Download The App Handicap Hurdle tomorrow with Cue To Cue and Victor Hewgo.
Cue To Cue nearly upset the long odds-on Peddlers Cross at Musselburgh on her most recent start and is another good mare out of Marello, who won many big races for Keith’s mother, Mary.
Victor Hewgo won at the track in November and has been spared a run in heavy ground.
“I hope Cue To Cue runs as she’s in very good form. I also want to run Victor Hewgo,” said Reveley.
“Cue To Cue ran a smashing race last time against Peddlers Cross and I think the conditions of this race are more or less what she wants.
“Three miles on good ground and a flat track should suit her down to the ground.
“She’s very well, she likes it at Doncaster having finished fourth in a Grade Two there, but it looks to be a very hot race.”