Carlisle is the focus for Thursday's racing action
Carlisle is the focus for Thursday's racing action

Jumps racing is to the fore on Thursday with four of five UK and Irish meetings staged over obstacles ahead of Cheltenham's return on Friday. 

They have got a seven-race card at Carlisle from 1.55pm until 5.20pm with the conditions set to be 'Good-good to firm in places' on the chase course.

And there is an exciting Grade 1-winning novice hurdler making his bow over fences for trainer Lucinda Russell. 

We have picked five horses for you to follow. 

1.55pm - Every Race Live On Racing TV Novices' Hurdle (2m4f)

MISTER WHITAKER only had three spins over hurdles back in 2017 before quickly moving on to chasing. 

He rated 153 at best in that discipline and, while without a win since April 2019, he has only had three starts in each of the last two seasons for Mick Channon. 

Mister Whitaker makes his debut for Donald McCain here and is capable when fresh. 

The nine-year-old could have too much class for these rivals. 

LiveScore selection: Mister Whitaker 

2.30pm - Introducing Racing TV Novices' Chase (2m4f)

Lucinda Russell's Senor Ahoy could be the star of the show at Carlisle
Lucinda Russell's Senor Ahoy could be the star of the show at Carlisle

This has a 'not to be missed' feel about it as Lucinda Russell sends Grade 1-winning novice hurdler AHOY SENOR out for his seasonal return/chasing bow. 

The six-year-old was 2-2 over timber last season and there was no fluke in the manner of his Sefton Novices' Hurdle success at Aintree in April, where he had smart performer Bravemansgame well held in second and the remainder strung out behind. 

He is an exciting recruit to the chasing ranks but the presence of Dan Skelton's Cadzand ensures this is not a penalty kick. 

LiveScore selection: Ahoy Senor 

3.05pm - Colson Coors Handicap Hurdle (2m1f)

Itsnotyouitsme was quite game from the front when bringing up a Hexham double in June over 2m4f and returns from a break now. 

He has run well over C&D before too, but perhaps more of a stamina test would be better for him. 

QUINTA DO MAR won a Ludlow novice (2m, soft) in March and ran well in a stronger race than this at Cheltenham over 2m4½f on good ground when last sighted in April. 

Ben Pauling's team are in form and there is scope for further progress with this six-year-old. 

LiveScore selection: Quinta Do Mar

3.40pm - Antonia Reid Lifetime In Racing Winner Handicap Chase (3m2f)

Jonjo O'Neill Snr's Present Chief is one of our tips at Carlisle
Jonjo O'Neill Snr's Present Chief is one of our tips at Carlisle

Speak Of The Devil put his usual jumping woes to one side in scoring last time at Hexham and can be given claims with a replication upped in distance now. 

However, preference is for PRESENT CHIEF for Team Jonjo O'Neill Snr/Jnr. 

The dual hurdles winner shaped well under a patient ride at Worcester (2m7f, good) on his chasing introduction last month, beaten just over a length into third, and this proven stayer promises to be well suited upped in distance. 

LiveScore selection: Present Chief 

4.50pm - Get Daily Tips At racingtv.com Handicap Hurdle Division 1 (2m4f)

BE THE DIFFERENCE remains a maiden after nine starts over timber but the best of those — third at Catterick (2m3½f, heavy) — would give him claims of bagging a race of this ilk. 

The Phil Kirby inmate was a touch too keen off a slow pace on his seasonal return at Sedgefield in August and could do better here having been eased 2lb since. 

LiveScore selection: Be The Difference

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