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Top Benefit can pay off again for Mansell


Top benefit (1.45) can take a sucessful step up to open class at Howick today for Dave Mansell, currently this season's leading rider with 16 winners. The seven-year-old showed little in five runs over two seasons in Ireland, but has been transformed since joining the trainer Julie Houldey at Sandfield Park Stables in the Cotswolds.

Top Benefit won his fourth race on the bounce in the intermediate at Chaddesley Corbett a fortnight ago in a time only fractionally slower than Cappa Bleu, now the favourite for the Cheltenham Foxhunters, set in the preceding men's open.

Bee An Bee (2.15) looks set to repeat last year's success in today's men's open at Godstone. The front-running veteran has little to fear from anything in his area and the main danger could be Simon Tindall's newcomer Letterman, who showed form under Rules in Ireland.

FIXTURES: TODAY: Curre and Llangibby at Howick. (First race: 12.00). 2m W of Chepstow B4293. East Essex at Marks Tey. (12.0). 5m W of Colchester at junc of A12 and A120. East Devon at Bishops Court. (11.30). 1/2m SW of Ottery St Mary off B3174. Sinnington at Duncombe Park. (12.30). 1/2 SW of Helmsley off A170; 12m E of Thirsk. Southdown and Eridge at Godstone. (12.30). E of town; 1m from Junc 6 of M25. TOMORROW: Bicester with Whaddon Chase at Dunthrop. (12.30). 2m of Chipping Norton at Junc of A4300 and A361. Blankney at North Carlton. (11.30). At Lincolnshire Showground; 1m N of Lincoln; A1500 off Tilbridge Lane. Granta Harriers at Higham. (1.30). 8m NE of Colchester via A12 and B1068. South Herefordshire at Garnons. (1.00). 8m W of Hereford; just off A438; Exit 4 M50. Taunton Vale at Kingston St Mary. (12.00). 3m N of Taunton; off A361; Exit 25 M5. Tynedale at Corbridge. (12.30). 3m N of town; off A68 on B6318.