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  1. #1

    2013 Arkle Chase

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    THE RACING POST ARKLE CHALLENGE TROPHY CHASE

    Class 1, Grade One, Total Prize Fund 150,000, 2.05pm, Cheltenham, Tuesday, March 12, 2013, two miles. For novice 5-y-o & upwards, two miles. Weights: 11st 7lb. Allowances: mares 7lb. Entries closed January 22, entries revealed January 24 (33 entries), scratchings deadline February 19, six-day confirmation stage March 6, final declaration stage 10.00am, March 11.

    Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Monday, January 21, 2013. May not include some overseas form.

    Form Horse Age Owner Trainer

    Form Horse Age Owner Trainer

    241//-111F ARVIKA LIGEONNIERE (FR) 8 Susannah Ricci Willie Mullins IRE
    321-122 AUPCHARLIE (IRE) 7 Ann & Alan Potts Partnership Willie Mullins IRE
    111123 BAILY GREEN (IRE) 7 Adam Scott Mouse Morris IRE
    00-21241 BENEFFICIENT (IRE) 7 A Shiels/Niall Reilly Tony Martin IRE
    1622-111 CAPTAIN CONAN (FR) 6 Triermore Stud Nicky Henderson
    41552302 HIS EXCELLENCY (IRE) 5 Mrs Jo Tracey David Pipe
    2P32-111 MAJALA (FR) 7 Sharon Nelson Jayne Taylor Darren Taylor Tom George
    22/52-113 MARITO (GER) 7 Susannah Ricci Willie Mullins IRE
    1232-111 OVERTURN (IRE) 9 Tim Leslie Donald McCain
    2111-11 SIMONSIG 7 Ronnie Bartlett Nicky Henderson
    1116-1141 TAP NIGHT (USA) 6 J P McManus Lucinda Russell
    1050-611 VIVA COLONIA (IRE) 8 Bolingbroke Racing, Mersey Racing Brian Ellison


    1
    Timeform Ratings (weight-adjusted)

    176P Simonsig
    172p Overturn
    172 Arvika Ligeonniere
    165 Aupcharlie
    164p Captain Conan
    162 Benefficient
    161 Oscars Well
    161 Baily Green
    160 Fago
    159 Twinlight (as of 18/02/13)
    159 Marito
    159 Majala
    Last edited by Old Vic; 03-06-2013 at 07:55 PM.

  2. #2
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    Brian Hamilton is toying with the idea of sending Moscow Mannon straight over fences next season after the six-year-old wound up his campaign with a fine fourth in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper at Cheltenham.

    Moscow Mannon had won three races before his creditable effort behind Champagne Fever at the Festival last week.

    Having already schooled well over fences, he is set for a break before returning for an early start to next term, with Listowel in September being the likely first port of call.

    "He's A1 but we're not going to run him again. We're going to let him off and bring him back early for next season," said Downpatrick-based Hamilton.

    "We'd planned that but we could have given him another run. The only bumper he was qualified to run in was at Liverpool.

    "We're thinking of going chasing with him too because he's six years old now. He's schooled over fences and jumps quite well, so it's possible. I haven't ruled it out yet.

    "We might just skip hurdles and go straight over fences. He's got a good jump in him and it would be a pity to spoil that by getting him to jump lower over hurdles. We've not fully decided yet.

    "We're giving him a break and will have him back in towards the end of June or early July and crack on with him for Listowel in the middle of September.

    "There are races there for him whichever way we decide to go."

  3. #3
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    mordin has simonsig running in rsa next year ...WTF


    SIMONSIG HAS POTENTIAL TO WIN A GOLD CUP

    SIMONSIG (42) never came off the bridle when winning a strongly run renewal of the Neptune novices hurdle at Cheltenham. He was moving so well when Cotton Mill left him in the lead two out I have no doubt he would have scored anyway.

    Watching him race I get the strong feeling that fast ground is needed for Simonsig to produce his very best. He's such a pacey sort I find it hard to believe he'd produce top form on soft ground.

    Given his stamina and change of gears I can readily see Simonsig developing into a serious candidate for the Cheltenham Gold Cup in two seasons. Next season he must have a fine chance of landing another win at the Cheltenham Festival in the RSA Chase.

    Second placed FELIX YONGER (39) stayed on well, though never looking likely to threaten the winner. He is built and bred to go two and a half miles plus, probably three, over fences. He’s fairly athletic but really didn’t look to be a two miler when nonetheless winning a Grade 2 over that distance at Naas last time.

    In that race it was good to see that Felix Yonger was happy to settle and just lob along in second behind a slightly slow early pace.

    However when the pace picked up and the horses ran the last mile 3.2 seconds faster than the next fastest race Felix Yonger’s jumping wasn’t great. He didn’t seem to like jumping at near sprint speed too much. He moved really well but looked scrappy at the hurdles, especially the last where he landed on all fours. He was so full of running he was still able to clear away from his rivals from there to score by three lengths.

    What was impressive was just how much time Felix Yonger was able to make from halfway up despite running over a clearly inadequate distance. That’s invariably a sign of a high class horse.

    Judged by trainer Willie Mullins’ comments he clearly thinks the horse is best suited by a fast surface. He told reporters earlier “He is a super mover and I don’t think he is a winter horse. I think he will be better on better ground in the spring. Ruby always thought he would have no problem staying but he is well able to compete over two miles on better ground. He shows me plenty of gears at home and I think he will improve again.’

    Felix Yonger only managed second on heavy ground on his two seasonal debuts to date. Then again, he’s such a relaxed horse maybe he is hard to get fit at home and will always need his first run off a break.

    The one clunker in Felix Yonger’s record is the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham last year. In that race he was forced wide due to lacking the pace to manouver closer to the rail early. When the pace increased running down the hill he was absolutely floundering. From being six lengths back at the top of the hill he was thirty lengths behind in little more than a furlong as they ran down it. He ended up getting beat nearly 77 lengths. That run made him look like an out and out three miler. So it's understandable he showed major improvement when stepped up to 2m 5f here.

    Next year Felix Yonger looks a decent prospect for the RSA Chase. Meanwhile he should be a big player at either Aintree or Punchestown.

    COTTON MILL (40) tried to run out and unseated his rider when still leading and moving strongly two out. My best estimate is he'd have finished second by four or five lengths but for this.

    When he won the Grade 2 prep for the Neptune at Warwick last time there were a few signs that Cotton Mill was a bit quirky. He raced keenly and wore a cross noseband to give his jockey more leverage. In addition his rider was obviously under instructions to take the lead as late as possible because he sat in a close second or third until asking Cotton Mill for his effort running up to the last. At that point Cotton Mill looked to be going a lot better than his only challenger Ambion Wood. But that one forced him to run hard all the way to the line, the pair drawing nine lengths clear of the rest.

    It could be that Cotton Mill is going to prove best on tighter, narrower courses that Cheltenham. Or it may be he prefers smaller fields. Only time will tell.

  4. #4
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    Simonsig will be going for 2013 Arkle surely ? Felix Yonger might be an RSA horse but Boston Bob is the Wylie horse you would think will go that route. He is some boy that Mordin.

  5. #5
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    Which way will Super Duty go ?

    Donald McCain is excited about going chasing with Super Duty following his fine run behind Simonsig over hurdles at Aintree on Saturday.

    The six-year-old lined up on Merseyside with three wins from four starts over hurdles and possibly unlucky to be unbeaten having fallen on his other start.

    A horrendous mistake at the second-last ended his challenge in the John Smith's Mersey Novices' Hurdle, but he still ran with credit to finish second to one of the most exciting horses in training.

    "I was really pleased with him and a little frustrated as well," said McCain.

    "We certainly wouldn't have beaten the winner, but I'd loved to have known how close we could have got.

    "It wasn't until I saw the pictures that I realised what a massive mistake it was and how well Jason (Maguire) did to stay on him.

    "He is a horse who finds plenty off the bridle and I'm not saying we'd have got very close to the winner, but we'd have come a long way clear of the others.

    "That's him done for this season and he'll go novice chasing next season."

  6. #6
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    Arkle or Jewson ? AP on Alderwood

    Alderwood gave me winners at Cheltenham, Fairyhouse and Punchestown earlier this week and he will make a lovely novice chaser next season.

  7. #7
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    One of the most exciting young horses in Henderson's yard is undoubtedly Simonsig, a brilliant winner of novice hurdles at both Cheltenham and Aintree in the spring.

    He is likely to embark on a novice chase campaign this season and is set to come back in distance to the minimum trip to begin with.

    "I would have no hesitation coming back to two miles. Barry (Geraghty) just felt that two and a half would help him over hurdles, but I think if he went to fences you'd probably see him coming back to two. I would like to think he's an Arkle horse," said Henderson.

    "He definitely stays, he stayed two and a half miles well at Cheltenham, but he's a frightening horse in that his gears are all there. He has a very high cruising speed.

    "Every now and then you have to do bits of work with these horses and I would let him play around Sprinter Sacre and things like that.

    "It's a bit frightening doing that, but as long as you've got very sensible boys on board, you can do it.

    "If you didn't, you could get yourself into a lot of trouble."

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    Unioniste - half-brother to stable's terrific servant and Gold Cup fifth My Will, by same sire as Neptune Collonges (Dom Alco) and has same owner (John Hales) - is a compelling prospect according to Nicholls. "Could run at Cheltenham before Christmas," the trainer said of the four-year-old that won a chase in Auteil in May.

  10. #10
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    A few rumblings on twitter and other boreds about Simonsigs jumping. Didnt go well over fences when pointing ...didnt school well bla bla.

    Champion Hurdle backers trying to lay off imo.

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