Preparation for Cheltenham Festival gets serious

Sam Twsiton-Davies on Clan Des Obeaux

Paul Nicholls trained Clan Des Obeaux is amongst a string of horses running at Ascot and Haydock on Saturday in preparation of the Cheltenham Festival in March – with the Betfair Denman Chase over 2m 7f at Ascot at Clan Des Obeaux’s mercy.

Ridden by Harry Cobden, Nicholls said of the strongly fancied Clan Des Obeaux (2.45) Ascot: “Clan goes well fresh. There are big races at Ascot, Haydock and Wincanton.

“Every weekend is a big one until Cheltenham.”

The Nicholls and Cobden duo are also well fancied in the Befair Hurdle over 1m 7f with Getaway Trump Ascot (3.20). Nicholls’ Coup De Pinceau (1.35) and Black Corton (2.10) are also tipped to win.

In the aftermath of the equine flu outbreak that halted racing in England, Nicholls said: “All the horses are fit and well.”

Deise Aba (12.30), and Cloudy Glen (1.00) are both expected to run well at Ascot.

Waiting Patiently (3.55) is selected to win the Betfair Ascot Chase over 2m 5f, the Ruth Jefferson trained horse eyeing the £85,000 winner’s prize, ridden by B. S. Hughes, repeating last year’s success.

“Waiting Patiently is in great nick, great form,” said Jefferson, whose entry faces tough opposition in Charbel, Nicholls duo Cyrname and Politologue, Fox Norton and Aso.

“Whether Waiting Patiently has a favourites chance? I don’t know. He’s not missed any preparation in the wake of the equine flu outbreak. And he had been vaccinated.

“I am hopeful that Waiting Patiently will run a good race,” said Jefferson.

Another Emotion ew (4.30) and Jonjo O’Neill trained Lunar Baby (5.00) are also tipped to win.

At Haydock Nigel Twiston-Davies trained Torpillo (12.50) is expected to run well under Thomas Bellamy in the William Hill Victor Ludorum Juvenile Hurdle over 1m 7f.

If You say Run (1.25), Yanworth (1.50), Luck Of The Draw (2.25) and Burrows Park (2.55) are Leader selections.

Ramses De Teillee (3.35) trained by David Pipe and ridden by David Noonan, is set to shine in the William Hill Grand National Trial Handicap, an each way tip.

“Ramses De Teillee had a wind operation in the summer and has progressed this year,” said Pipe, in preparation of a tilt at the Aintree Grand National on April 6.

“Ramses De Teillee has a lovely weight in the National of 10st 5lb,” added Pipe.

Trevor Hemmings owned Stoney Mountain (4.10) and Pacha Du Polder (4.45) are also selected at Haydock.

At Gowran Park, Monalee (2.30) is tipped to win the Red Mills Chase over 2m 4f.

Wincanton selections: (1.10) Dogon; (1.45) Magic Saint; (2.20) Ron’s Dream; (3.00) Sceau Royal; (3.30) Sandhurst Lad; (4.05) Kerrow ew; (4.35) Show On The Road; (5.10) Flo’s Boy Sam ew.

At Lingfield’s flat meeting Holly Doyle is booked to ride First Link (1.30). Derry Boy (2.05), Desert Doctor (2.40) ridden by Luke Morris, Spring Romance (3.15) ridden by Adam Kirby, Isomer (3.50) and Miss Green Dream (4.25) are Leader selections.

At Kempton’s evening meeting Dahawi (4.40), Charlie Arthur (5.15), Nylon Speed (5.45), Treacherous (6.15), Capriolette  (6.45), Grey Brittain (7.15), Caspar The Cub (7.45),  and Always A Drama (8.15) are the Leader’s selections.

Saturday’s ITV4 racing schedule: Ascot, Haydock, Wincanton and Gowran.


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