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  1. #21
    Senior Member jono's Avatar
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    The Shloer Chase at Cheltenham in November has been mentioned as a possible comeback race for the eight-time Grade One winner.
    I do love how it seems the report has shoe horned the Shloer Chase as a possible comeback. "We'd be inclined to look at an earlier race for his comeback run" suddenly means he's coming over for the Open...sorry November meeting. No chance he comes over to England for that meeting in my eyes (or Britain at all before March unless he goes up in trip for the King George)

    No surprise in my eyes that Douvan will start back over 2 miles. Regardless of where he ends up this season they were always likely to get him a comeback run over 2 miles before then navigating the next route to take. The 2m chase at the start of November at Naas would be an obvious starting point in my eyes. Mullins has run the likes of Felix Yonger, Twinlight there the last few years. That would get an easy run out of Douvan and then give them plenty of time to decide on where they go next. There's definately been a huge over reaction to Douvan's defeat though. Now, the value is 100% with the 10/3 - 3/1 on Douvan but we know part of that price is the uncertainty of targets, unlike say Altior.

    Mullins is of course a fan of sending over a 'sighter' to Britain during the Winter and it'll be interesting to see who he sends in this division. Like I said i cannot see Douvan coming over for the Tingle Creek even if they get a prep run in beforehand. Nor Min. Both i'd think will be eased back after last years injury's. Un de Sceaux could very well come back over and try to regain the race but I have a feeling that Great Field could / could also take the journey over.

    How does Great Field measure up for everyone? To take Ordinary Worlds form with Altior, Min and Great Field literally, there's not a massive difference between them all:

    OW vs Altior = 15 lengths
    OW vs Great Field = 11 lengths
    OW vs Min = 9 lengths

    (Note not that I do NOT take this literally but just gives us some brief comparison)

    Went off far too keen in the County Hurdle in 2016 which gave him no chance but minus that his record is faultless (unlike his jumping!) winning with ease. Is he being overlooked? I imagine he could be just what Altior needs and just what will bring out the best in Altior
    Last edited by jono; 09-10-2017 at 10:43 PM.

  2. #22
    Senior Member jono's Avatar
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    And briefly on the Ryanair debate...

    I’m it seems in the minority who actually doesn’t have such a negative view on the Ryanair (and JLT)!

    Personally I think the Ryanair offers a natural stepping stone towards the Gold Cup for horses aka how the likes of Imperial Commander, Cue Card and Don Cossack used it plus some horses are just going to be best at the trip. Take Vautour - he produced some of the best performances in the Ryanair and specifically the JLT that I think i'll ever witness live at the Festival. He had the talent to run and potentially win a festival chase over any distance but he excelled over this trip and I am very confident in saying I don’t think he would have produced such a high level (and one of the best visually at the track) a performance in the Champion Chase or Gold Cup.

    Faugheen mentions:

    Hopefully we don't have that situation again where the one owner has the best 4 or 5 horses in training.
    and there in lies the issue really doesn't it? Not the race itself. Outside of the obvious Vautour year and maybe UDS not taking on Douvan in the CC this year we haven't had any clashes we've really missed have we? I can't think of any? I don't have an issue with a trainer having so many of the best horses in his yard as I think there are plenty of benefits that are reaped from that situation but it just so happens it's been with Mullins who is someone who will spread his horses around. The likes of Nichols and Henderson haven't shown such traits. It'll be interesting with the rise of Gordon Elliott what approach he adopts.

    There's my small support from the much maligned and knocked Ryanair Chase

  3. #23
    Senior Member Istabraq's Avatar
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    The Ryanair struggled in its' early years as it was seen as a race for Gold Cup no stayers/rejects, it's actually developed into a proper G1 race these days.
    Only a matter of time before they create a G1 hurdle race over the intermediate distance, a few years ago I may have been against this but probably less so now.
    Could easily be Vroum Vroum Mags 7th festival entry if it was run next March....

  4. #24
    Senior Member Kevloaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jono View Post
    No surprise in my eyes that Douvan will start back over 2 miles. Regardless of where he ends up this season they were always likely to get him a comeback run over 2 miles before then navigating the next route to take. The 2m chase at the start of November at Naas would be an obvious starting point in my eyes. Mullins has run the likes of Felix Yonger, Twinlight there the last few years. That would get an easy run out of Douvan and then give them plenty of time to decide on where they go next. There's definately been a huge over reaction to Douvan's defeat though. Now, the value is 100% with the 10/3 - 3/1 on Douvan but we know part of that price is the uncertainty of targets, unlike say Altior.
    I tihnk I said a while back when Douvan was 4/1 I would keep having free bets on, and did with Sky. I can't put a penny of 'real' money on as I think he will not end up in the race but I am pretty sure, if I had no prior interest, I'd back whichever of the two was 2nd fav on the day! I think both are fantastic and the clash would be superb. I have said before and will again though, Ruby has likened Douvan to Kauto Star, who also had a failed Champion Chase and I just don't think they'll end up in this race, unless its another gimmie - i.e Altior injured!. Especially as.... (moving on to your next point)

    Quote Originally Posted by jono View Post
    How does Great Field measure up for everyone? To take Ordinary Worlds form with Altior, Min and Great Field literally, there's not a massive difference between them all:

    OW vs Altior = 15 lengths
    OW vs Great Field = 11 lengths
    OW vs Min = 9 lengths

    Went off far too keen in the County Hurdle in 2016 which gave him no chance but minus that his record is faultless (unlike his jumping!) winning with ease. Is he being overlooked? I imagine he could be just what Altior needs and just what will bring out the best in Altior
    .... Great Field isn't a million miles off on collateral form and the 'vibes' are strong about Min [in the rematch with Altior]. I am personally firmly of the belieif Min would get slammed by Altior, and think part of the reason they are going to talk Min up vs Altior is so they have a valid reason to AVOID the clash with Douvan.

    Back to Great Field though, I don't think the jumping is good enough to win any Champion Chase...even a poor one. I would want to see LOADS of improvement and as Willie doesn't do any schooling I don't think he is the trainer to get the absolute best out of this horse?!

    Quote Originally Posted by jono View Post
    And briefly on the Ryanair debate...

    I’m it seems in the minority who actually doesn’t have such a negative view on the Ryanair (and JLT)!

    Personally I think the Ryanair offers a natural stepping stone towards the Gold Cup for horses aka how the likes of Imperial Commander, Cue Card and Don Cossack used it plus some horses are just going to be best at the trip.

    There's my small support from the much maligned and knocked Ryanair Chase
    You might be right, it probably does but we don't want it to! Having briefly read your Gold Cup post, you want Yorkhill and Douvan in the Gold Cup or in the CC and GC respecively. With the Ryanair, we might end up with a VAUTOUR MOMENT from Douvan...but will anyone care in 20 years? Maybe they will - but in the same sentance they'll say "wish he would have had a go in the Gold Cup". Some horses might be best at that trip, so they can wait 3 weeks and win at Aintree?

    I know you fancy Yorkhill for the Gold Cup, but if the Ryanair is worth winning, why not aim Yorkhill (with not 1, but 2 C&D festival wins) at the Ryanair, and go for Gold next season? Are you telling me part of you wouldn't feel disappointed to see Yorkhill win the Ryanair? I think if they came out tomorrow and said Yorkhill was going for the Ryanair, he'd be evens and the absolute NAP of the entire season?.... but we don't want that, do we?!

    Quote Originally Posted by Istabraq View Post
    The Ryanair struggled in its' early years as it was seen as a race for Gold Cup no stayers/rejects, it's actually developed into a proper G1 race these days.
    Only a matter of time before they create a G1 hurdle race over the intermediate distance, a few years ago I may have been against this but probably less so now.
    Could easily be Vroum Vroum Mags 7th festival entry if it was run next March....
    Haha 7th entry VVM wins All!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. #25
    Senior Member Kevloaf's Avatar
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    Just having a look at this market - REALLY going to struggle to get double figure runners aren't we?!

    EVery horse listed on oddschecker:

    Altior - definite runner
    Douvan - far from a definite runner - the only quotes I can find say - from Mullins "he needs to actually win a CC or two, but he has done everything we've asked so far"
    Min - highly likely target
    Great Field - Highly likely target
    Fox Norton - declared target
    Yorkhill - No chance of running
    Un De Sceaux - small chance, if soft would run?
    Politilogue - Future stayer - no chance of running
    Charbel - pretty likely to take on altior again?!
    Camping Ground - priced up by two bookies ..... get a grip.
    Flying Angel - won't run
    Special Tiara - deserves to defend it
    Ar Mad - unlikely runner ... needs to go the other way
    Identity Thief - will surely try stepping up
    Top Notch - Unlikely to drop in trip
    Forest Bihan - might run
    Gods Own - Surely try Ryanair this time
    Cloudy Dream - Might run but not good enough
    Sir Valentino - not anywhere near good enough

    That is only 6 runners that I think will be aimed at the race...

    The one I am considering backing is Charbel at 25/1 .... connections didn't fear Altior in the novice season, and although I'm in the camp that Altior would have got the job done in the Arkle... 6/4 vs 25/1 isn't a fair reflection of their chances?
    I can't see any reason connections would 'avoid' Altior AT ALL this season....

    He did finish behind Forest Bihan and San Benedeto at Aintree, but with all due respect, neither of them are actually grade 1 class - he made a mistake and can't have been his true running?

    I just think 25/1 is too big for a horse that is still going to be improving, and on his Arkle run should not be a 25/1 shot.

    Interesting to hear anyones thoughts though - I think this is a race where if you can find the definite runners, and with a short price fav, you can easily get a 'green book' backing each way

  6. #26
    I agree 25/1 seems huge considering how close was to Altior last year, was going very well when falling

  7. #27
    I think they'll step Charbel up in trip this season.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Kevloaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Faugheen_Machine View Post
    I think they'll step Charbel up in trip this season.
    I am sure he won't stick at 2m all season, but do you think they'll not want a rematch with Altior? It might hbapopen early season and if he gets put away then might step up? IMO

  9. #29
    He was in the process of running a decent race when he fell in the Arkle but I don't think he'd have finished within 5 lengths of Altior. Altior had already beaten him in the Henry VIII chase at Sandown in December so I'm not sure Kim Bailey will want another crack at him. If he does it'll most likely happen in the Tingle Creek imo

  10. #30
    Senior Member Kevloaf's Avatar
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    So, in an article in the RUK club magazine that I have come home to today, Ruby says (and I'll copy out the whole thing)

    Clash on the Cotswolds
    The flawless Altior against a rejuvinated Douvan will be some head to head. We might have to wait until the Champion Chase at Cheltenham as both horses could remain at home in England and Ireland respectively - but it will be worth the wait.

    I've made no secret of my regard for Douvan and, going in to the 2017 Cheltenham Festival, he had justified my faith, winning every one of his 13 starts for us. Of course, things didn't go to plan in March when he was seventh in the Champion Chase, after which he was found to be lame.

    Douvan, who, don't forget, beat Sizing John to win the PaddyPower chase, was crowned the highest-rated horse in Britain and Ireland last season, but Altior was only 4lb inferior, which was amazing for a novice.

    Altior is unbeaten over obstacles and has shown more at novice level than Douvan had, according to official ratings. The bookies have Altior as the favourite at the time of writing but I wouldn't want to swap Douvan"

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