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Valbchek picked to upset favourite in big opener to St Leger meeting

| 12.09.2012

Ladbrokes head of PR David Williams is taking on the favourite in the biggest race on the opening day of the St Leger festival at Doncaster.

Rather than plump for Sole Power, it is believed that Valbchek can spring a surprise at 6/1.

He is expected to bounce back to form after a disappointing run at Royal Ascot when Jeremy Noseda’s horses were out of form.

However, he is sticking with the favourites in the opening two races, with Red Avenger 9/4 in the opener after receiving what seems a fair mark for his handicap debut.

Ribart is one of the best backed horses of the day in the second race into 1/1 and is bidding to extend his unbeaten start to his career to two races.

Jockey Julie Crone won the charity race last year and is back attempting to defend her title on board Sunnyside Tom, but she may have her hands full with Patriotic, who is the mount of Mick Kinane.

Patriotic and Sunnyside Tom are both 6/1.

Swedish Sailor can overcome a lengthy break from the racecourse to take the fifth race at 2/1 from favourite Beaten Up, with Discression preferred in the penultimate race at 5/1, which looks the most competitive on the card.

Course and distance specialists tend to fare well in the final contest and Haajes can be backed at 6/1 to triumph for the second year in succession.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing



Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.