Vision De La Vie notched the first success of his career at the 13th attempt at Musselburgh recently and can stage a quick follow-up on the track tomorrow.
The gelding had shown plenty of promise – being placed over both hurdles and fences – but trainer Pauline Robson reported that he was perhaps the laziest horse she had ever handled.
So the gelding was fitted with blinkers here on New Year’s Day and they woke him up sufficiently to finish a solid third on what his first run for six months.
That was the third time the six-year-old had been placed from three visits to the East Lothian track and he came good here a week ago, leading early in the home straight and keeping on well. That was over three miles and he tackles the same trip in the opening William Hill Bet and Watch Handicap Chase (1.40) when he can defy a 7lbs penalty.
His trainer can make it a double with Teo Vivo in the William Hill Download the App Handicap Hurdle (4.00). The gelding began his career by finishing second in a bumper on this track and has actually been runner-up on the seaside circuit on no less than five occasions. He looked set to score here on New Year’s Day when leading off the home turn, but was worn down in the closing stages.
That was over two-and-a-half miles and the drop back to the minimum trip looked to have worked here three weeks later when he took command at the first hurdle in the home straight. But he was again collared on the run-in and, although he fought back gamely, he went down by a neck in a photo finish.
The form got a big boost, though, when the third horse, Shrewd, won at the big meeting here last week, so Teo Vivo gets the vote, despite being raised 3lbs in the ratings.
Bollin Line scored in ready style at Catterick a fortnight ago and can defy a 7lb hike in the ratings to follow up in the Boogie in the Morning Handicap Chase (2.50). he gelding was placed over hurdles before winning two point-to-points last spring and had been runner-up twice over regulation fences at Catterick in December. He steps up in trip tomorrow, but stays two-and-a-half miles well and has only a low weight, while Dean Pratt – who rode him well at Catterick – will claim a handy 5lbs allowance.
Morning Time rattled up a hat-trick of hurdle wins a couple of seasons ago before switching to fences and he scored over the larger obstacles early last term. But then came a string of disappointing efforts. He returned to action here late in November after an extended summer break but again ran below par, so Fife trainer Lucinda Russell has switched the ten-year-old back to the smaller obstacles.
He was well beaten here last month, but that was a decent event and he was not totally disgraced. That run of disappointing efforts has seen him drop 19lbs in the ratings and he could be worth a tentative each-way wager in the Racing UK Profits Returned to Racing Handicap Hurdle (3.25).
Selections: 1.40 Vision De La Vie; 2.50 Bollin Line; 3.25 Morning Time; 4.00 Teo Vivo.