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Victor Chandler Chase 2012  

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Somersby Lands Group One Glory in Victor Chandler
21/01/12

1 Somersby 9/2
2 Finian's Rainbow 5/2J
3 Al Ferof 5/2J
8 ran Distances: 1¼l, 3¾l, 6l
TIME 4m 9.10s (slow by 5.10s)

Somersby was the pride of Ascot after getting the better of Finian's Rainbow and Al Ferof in a thrilling climax to the Victor Chandler Chase.

Somersby
© Racehorse Photos

Somersby

Henrietta Knight's eight-year-old loves the Berkshire course and was gaining compensation for a narrow defeat by Master Minded in the 2011 renewal.

Always travelling and jumping well for Dominic Elsworth, the 9-2 shot challenged Finian's Rainbow approaching the final fence but looked booked for second until forging a length and a quarter clear, with Al Ferof a further three and three-quarter lengths back in third.

Knight is now favouring running Somersby in the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, for which he is 6-1 joint-favourite with Coral .

She said: "I questioned whether I'd made the right choice running him back over two miles, but thought he deserved another pop at it as he'd gone so close last year. Terry (Biddlecombe, husband) is thrilled and crying his eyes out.

"He has this one wonderful surge and Dominic got it dead right today. It's the best January I can remember for us. He's not in the Gold Cup and if it were my choice I would like him to go for the Ryanair. I think that's the right race for him."

Finian's Rainbow's connections may go away and contemplate whether to take him to the Ryanair, rather than stick to their original plan of the Queen Mother Champion Chase.

Owner Michael Buckley said: "I just think it's too early to take a view. He's been working more like a staying horse and if he does go for the Queen Mother it will be the last time he runs over two miles."

Paul Nicholls is sticking by his guns and will keep Al Ferof on course for the Arkle.

He said: "Ruby's come back and said you can't buy that experience and that the race will put him just right for Cheltenham. He'll run in the Arkle, which has always been the plan."

 

Position
Horse
Trainer
Jockey
Weight
Starting Price
Beaten Distance
1
Somersby
Miss H C Knight
D Elsworth
11st 7lbs
9 - 2
Winner
2
Finian's Rainbow
N J Henderson
B J Geraghty
11st 7lbs
5 - 2
1 1/4 length
3
Al Ferof
P F Nicholls
R Walsh
11st 7lbs
5 - 2
3 3/4 lengths
4
Forpadydeplasterer
T Cooper
Bryan J Cooper
11st 7lbs
12 - 1
6 lengths
5
I'm So Lucky
D Pipe
T J Murphy
11st 7lbs
66 - 1
8 lengths
6
Wishfull Thinking
P J Hobbs
R Johnson
11st 7lbs
15 - 2
15 lengths
7
Oiseau de Nuit
C L Tizzard
J Tizzard
11st 7lbs
33 - 1
2 1/2 lengths
Fell
Gauvain
Nick Williams
N Fehily
11st 7lbs
13 - 2
       


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