An exciting afternoon’s racing in prospect at Longchamp today and our first bet goes in the mile Listed contest (3.25pm).

Magny Cours and British raider Sir Busker head the market and good cases can be made for both, but at a bigger price, National Service holds strong claims on his second start for Frederic Rossi.

The imposing four year old did very well for his previous trainer Gavin Hernon, winning at Group 3 level over this trip at Chantilly last summer on just his third career start.  That proved to be his final run for the yard, with his owner moving him to Rossi, and though he didn’t quite run up to that Chantilly form when runner-up in Listed company here last month, that was his first start for 10 months and he can be expected to come on plenty for the run.

He has clearly been working very nicely at home, as his new trainer has been very positive about him in the press, and his physical stature suggests there should be more to come this year.

3.25pm Longchamp – 1pt each-way National Service @ 15/2 (Paddy Power, Betfair, 17/2 available with Bet365, 7-1 elsewhere)


Later on the card, Joao looks worth chancing in the first division of the four-year-old handicap (5.10pm).  Though it is a big field, most of these come into the race in moderate form, whereas Joao ran a promising race over 1m2f at Saint-Cloud, when the cheekpieces were left off.

A winner over this trip on very soft ground at Clairefontaine last summer, the cheekpieces worn that day return and it is a positive to see Pasquier on board again, having ridden him for the first time on his latest outing.

Joao is back down to his winning mark, the ground is in his favour and he looks set to run a big race.

5.10pm Longchamp – 1pt each-way Joao @ 10-1 5 places (Skybet, Betfred, Ladbrokes, Coral)