Cheltenham Festival 2013 

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cheltenham festival / arkle chase


Overturn Ready to Upset Simonsig Apple-Cart

Donald McCain is confident that his star novice chaser Overturn has a good chance of toppling the red-hot favourite Simonsig in the Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy at Cheltenham on the opening day of the Festival, Tuesday, March 12.

© Racehorse Photos


Front runner Overturn is a top-class dual code performer, having won the 2010 Northumberland Plate and 2011 Chester Cup on the Flat and has captured a number of big prizes over obstacles including the Galway Hurdle and Grade One Fighting Fifth Hurdle and also finished second in last season's Stan James Champion Hurdle.

He has made an impressive start to his chasing career this term with three wins from as many starts, making all to win unchallenged at Sandown, Doncaster and, on his latest outing at Musselburgh, very easily by 29 lengths on February 3.

In the Cheltenham betting, Overturn is currently a 5/2 shot to cause an upset in the Arkle, and McCain is confident his charge is ready for the challenge.

He said: "Everybody knows Overturn. We hoped to he would take to fences and he has took to them better than we could have hoped. Everything has gone very smoothly - we have got in all the runs we wanted. He is in great nick at home and we thoroughly look forward to the race. All we need now is a bit of good ground for the first day of The Festival. He loves it, coming out every day wanting to get on - it makes you smile.

"When he ran in the Champion Hurdle last year, it was probably the only time when I have seen him shattered. We brought him out the next day and he wanted to go again - that is just him. He just cannot get enough of the job.

"He has been on the go since he was a yearling and we keep expecting him to cry enough at some point but he just thrives on his job and racing. I have run him once or twice when I shouldn't have because he will kid you he is in better nick than he is. I ran him in the Christmas Hurdle the year before last and he wasn't half the horse he normally is.

"We know him well now. We go there with a feeling that his way of racing will make it very difficult for Simonsig. We aren't going to have to change anything with Overturn. His ratings are 112 on the Flat, 166 over hurdles and 165 over fences, and 85 on the all-weather! A great credit to him.

"I would love Overturn to have his big day jumping. He has this gallop for two miles - he keeps galloping and is just so enthusiastic. Touch wood, the jumping has gone with it. Simsonsig has been very impressive but he hasn't been second in the Champion Hurdle."

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