Sprinter Sacre Tops 10 Remaining in Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase 08/03/13
Nicky Henderson's jumping superstar Sprinter Sacre heads the 10 contenders for the £365,760 Grade One Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase (3.20pm), the highlight of Ladies Day, Wednesday, March 13.
Sprinter Sacre won all five of his starts over fences last season, including the Grade One Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase when beating Cue Card by seven lengths, and has continued in tremendous form this term with effortless displays in the Sportingbet Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown and the rearranged Victor Chandler Chase at Cheltenham in January, scoring by 15 and 14 lengths respectively.
Henderson is also responsible for the reigning champion Finian's Rainbow, who got the better of 2011 hero Sizing Europe last year in an epic duel up the famous Cheltenham hill. He has been disappointing this season, trailing home last in both his starts at Ascot, while Sizing Europe is unbeaten in five starts since last year's Festival, bagging two Grade Ones and three Grade Twos in Ireland for trainer Henry de Bromhead.
He made his debut for George in the Grade Two Denman Chase at Newbury on February 9, and, despite catching the eye with his excellent jumping when setting a strong pace, failed to stay the three-mile trip, coming home fifth.
George revealed: "Mail De Bievre's preparation has gone very well since his run at Newbury. We feel he has improved and is right where we want him.
"It was his first run for a year and a half and he shaped like a horse who needed the run. He's entitled to come on for it and I would not be worried about the bounce factor.
"Paddy (Brennan) was very impressed with him at Newbury and said he was never out of second gear, but you can not sustain that pace over three miles and he did very well to last for as long as he did.
"He has an unbelievably high cruising speed and he is a very exuberant jumper so that is why we wanted to come right back to two miles. It looks like everyone is playing for second behind Sprinter Sacre and we feel we have the horse that could fill that spot.
"We schooled him on better ground two days ago and Paddy felt he really enjoyed it. He is a really good mover but I don't think ground really matters to him."
The line up is completed by Realt Dubh, trained in Ireland by Noel Meade, and Richard Rowe's Tataniano, who won a Grade One contest at Aintree in April, 2010.
Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase - sponsor's prices:
1/4 Sprinter Sacre, 5/1 Sizing Europe, 12/1 Finian's Rainbow, Mail De Bievre, 18/1 Sanctuaire, 20/1 Wishfull Thinking, 25/1 Somersby, 33/1 Realt Dubh, 100/1 Tataniano Each way 1/4 odds, 1, 2, - non runner, no bet
Ladies' Day gets underway with the John Oaksey National Hunt Chase over four miles. There are 30 horses going forward for the £85,000 contest including leading fancies Back In Focus, Rival d'Estruval and Buddy Bolero.
Some of the leading novice hurdlers in Britain and Ireland will clash in the £120,000 Grade One Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (2.05pm) over two miles and five furlongs. The 24 acceptors feature hot favourite Pont Alexandre, trained by Irish champion Willie Mullins, The New One, from the stable of Nigel Twiston-Daviesand Jonjo O'Neill's Taquin De Seuil.
Dynaste, trained by David Pipe, is among 21 contenders going forward for the £150,000 Grade One RSA Chase (2.40pm) over an extended three miles. Other notables include Paul Stewart IronSpine Charity Challenge Gold Cup victor Unioniste and the Willie Mullins pair Boston Bob and Back In Focus.
There is a traditionally strong Irish representation in the £60,000 Grade One Weatherbys Champion Bumper (5.15pm) with 12 of the 34 possibles trained in Ireland. Leading British hope Empiracle, trained by Jeremy Scott, also goes forward.
GOLD CUP DAY SOLD OUT
Gold Cup Day (Friday, March 15) is now a sell out, with the last few Club Enclosure badges having been sold today. The only remaining option for people wishing to be at Cheltenham to see the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup is to book hospitality, for which there is extremely limited availability.
Hospitality can be booked by calling 01242 537653.
The going at Cheltenham is currently Good to Soft on both the Chase and Hurdles Courses, and Good to Soft, Soft in Places on the Cross Country Course, after four millimetres of rain today, Thursday, March 7.
Simon Claisse, Head of Racing, South West Region & Cheltenham's Clerk of the Course, commented: "We have had four millimetres of rain today and we are now expecting up to 10 millimetres before The Festival.
"There is no change from the forecast yesterday in that it will be frosty on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday next week."
|home | associations | bloodstock agents | bookmakers | information | horses | jockeys | links | overseas | portals | racecourses | race horse trainers | sales | studs | syndicates | submit site|
|© racingbetter.co.uk • 91 Tribune Drive • Carlisle • CA3 0LE|