Door is definitely Orpen for Norman

FOUR days until Christmas but only one day of racing left with tomorrow's cards at Lingfield, Kempton and Southwell our lot until Boxing Day.

Three whole days without racing, what on Earth are we going to do?

Make up for it tomorrow is one option and Norman Open should land the nap and fund the Christmas presents in the 6.25pm at Kempton.

This fellow did us a favour when doing the business at Lingfield a couple of weeks ago and while the winning margin was only three- quarters of a length, Norman Orpen probably won a shade cosier than it looked.

That was also a decent enough contest and as Norman Orpen's best form is over a mile, the step up from seven furlongs last time will definitely play to his strengths.

Add in that Kieren Fallon now takes over in the saddle and Jane Chapple-Hyam's three-year-old looks a good thing off just a 4lbs penalty.

If anything is going to scupper our plan and spoil the Christmas shopping it is the John Gosden-trained Private Joke who is open to any amount of improvements but he still looked very green last time and Norman Open may be too street-wise at this stage in the two horse's careers.

It could be a similar story in the handicap an hour earlier where New Code might prove too strong for Fallon's mount Kitty Wells.

Having had three runs, Luca Cumani's Kitty Wells now explores handicap company and there is no doubt she will win races from her lenient mark of 68. If she is well-backed, this is likely to be one of them.

However, tomorrow's top weight, New Code, is on an absolute roll at present and even though he has to give Kitty Wells eight pounds, that might not be enough to stop him. New Code's present connections bought the horse for 35,000 so they will certainly be hoping he can and land this modest pot worth less than 2,500.

Other fancies tomorrow are Brabazon in the opener at Lingfield (12.35pm) – a horse who travelled like a dream last time before two quick runs in a short of space time took their toll close home.

D'Artagnan, the horse that bustled up Private Joke last time, should also get his head in front in Lingfield's 1.35pm, while Fallon can hopefully work the oracle on the frustrating Co Dependent in Kempton's opener (3.55pm).

But if there's one more good thing tomorrow it is Corsican Boy at Kempton (4.55pm).

Roger Charlton's three-year-old fell out the stalls last time before staying on in pleasing fashion and with that run under his belt he can make it third-time lucky against rivals best described as modest – a description that hopefully won't apply to our Christmas pressies!

One Minute, ridden by Pat Cosgrave to victory in the Irish EBF/ROA Racing Post Owners Jackpot Novice Stakes at the John Smith's Cup meeting at York last month. PIC: Richard Sellers/PA Wire

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