April 22 / 13.50 Ayr

13.50

Good To Soft

CPMS Novices’ Champion Handicap Chase (GBB Race)

  • Prize money: £26015
  • 3m 0f 20y
  • Class 2
  • 9 runners
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CPMS Novices’ Champion Handicap Chase (GBB Race)

Runners: 9 runners

Type: Chase Turf

Surface: Turf

Weather: Showers

5/1 (Won)

  • Win: £7.50
  • Place: £1.70

Form: 62-312 D

Last run: 34 days

W: 11st 8lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 136

Form & Verdict
Took seven attempts to get off the mark over fences but he blew them away at Warwick (3m, good) last May and his return from ten months off was encouraging given that was over 2m3f on soft; comes here fresh and looks dangerous.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

4th

4

17th Feb 2024

Good To Soft

2m 5f 8y

Class 1

15:36 Ascot

Sail Away

11st 10lb

J: Harry Skelton

T: Dan Skelton

Unplaced in handicaps this season but hasn't done much wrong, fourth of 18 in the Great Yorkshire Chase at Doncaster on latest; however, he's up steeply in class here and will need others to underperform to have any chance.

50/1

4th

2

27th Jan 2024

Good

2m 7f 214y

Class 1

15:15 Doncaster

Sail Away

11st 8lb

J: Tristan Durrell

T: Dan Skelton

Hammered Forward Plan by 11l at Ayr last spring (3m, good; made most) and now only 6lb higher than that day after finishing weakly in two races this season following wind surgery; what could make a major difference this afternoon is the return to good ground (from good to soft); on the shortlist.

14/1

6th

3

16th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 214y

Class 2

15:15 Doncaster

Sail Away

11st 13lb

J: Fergus Gillard

T: Dan Skelton

Faded into fifth of seven on recent reappearance at Newbury (2m4f, good to soft) after wind surgery but that wasn't a bad run and he could improve for it; won in fine style at Ayr (3m, good) in April and this 8lb higher mark may not stop him if he returns to his best now back up in trip.

11/2

9/1

  • Place: £2.60

Form: 212113 D

Last run: 28 days

W: 10st 11lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 125

Form & Verdict
Not out of the first three in four chases but he shot up 10lb for his comfortable second success at Southwell (3m, good) and that looked a factor when 15l off the winner at Kelso (3m2f; has won on soft); likely to benefit from getting back on drier ground (as things stand) but this mark could be challenging.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1st

7

24th Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 0y

Class 1

15:37 Kempton

Forward Plan

10st 9lb

J: Ben Godfrey

T: Anthony Honeyball

Second-season chaser who went very close in major handicap at Doncaster (3m, good; off 4lb lower) most recently; won at same venue the time before; acts on soft; generally progressive and should go well again.

7/1

2nd

12

27th Jan 2024

Good

2m 7f 214y

Class 1

15:15 Doncaster

Forward Plan

10st 9lb

J: Ben Godfrey

T: Anthony Honeyball

Progressive last season; out of the weights when well held on reappearance in the Badger Beer and off a 7lb lower mark than that day he came from behind to see off Mister Coffey over C&D (good to soft) in December; they only jumped ten of the 18 fences (none up the home straight) but a 4lb rise still seems very fair; has to be on the shortlist.

8/1

1st

10

16th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 214y

Class 2

15:15 Doncaster

Forward Plan

10st 8lb

J: Ben Godfrey

T: Anthony Honeyball

Progressive during last season's first campaign over fences and he wasn't disgraced in the competitive Badger Beer at Wincanton on his reappearance; only seven and could still have more to offer.

5/1

15/8

  • Place: £1.40

Form: 1-5211 C

Last run: 77 days

W: 12st 0lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 142

Form & Verdict
Useful hurdler but a winning pointer who has duly raised his game since sent over fences, winning his last two very comfortably (3m1f, soft; 3m, good to soft); it wasn't a strong Grade 2 last time at Wetherby but he jumped well and looks progressive for his top yard.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

6th

5

13th Jan 2024

Soft

3m 5f 54y

Class 1

15:00 Warwick

City Chief

11st 8lb

J: Robert Dunne

T: Nicky Henderson

14l fourth to Malina Girl at Cheltenham (3m3f; favourite) in November, giving the impression that reappearance run might have been needed, but he again lost places late on when below-form fifth back at Cheltenham (3m2f) four weeks ago; looked promising last term but now has a bit to prove.

10/1

5th

6

16th Dec 2023

Soft

3m 2f 0y

Class 1

14:25 Cheltenham

City Chief

10st 4lb

J: Nico de Boinville

T: Nicky Henderson

Upwardly mobile last season, winning handicap at Hereford (3m1f, soft) and Grade 2 novice at Wetherby (3m, good to soft), both in small fields; encouraging 14l fourth of 13 to Malina Girl here (3m3f, soft) four weeks ago, giving the impression that reappearance run might have been needed; now meets the winner on 12lb better terms and may well exact his revenge.

5/1

2

19th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

3m 3f 71y

Class 1

14:20 Cheltenham

City Chief

12st 0lb

J: Nico de Boinville

T: Nicky Henderson

Raised his game sent over fences last season, winning very comfortably over about 3m1f in two small fields on soft and good to soft ground early this year, including in a Wetherby Grade 2 novice; creditable third of eight in novice handicap at Ayr (good) in April; should stay beyond 3m1f and he's a lightly raced 6yo with significant potential.

9/2

Form: 222U13 D

Last run: 33 days

W: 10st 8lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 122

Form & Verdict
Consistent chaser, winning two of his ten starts; ran right up to his best at Navan (2m7f, heavy) a month ago when staying on after getting outpaced; handles any ground and his stable always commands the utmost respect on its British raids.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

5th

4

3rd Mar 2024

Soft

3m 4f 61y

16:35 Leopardstown

Temptationinmilan

11st 5lb

J: Philip Byrnes

T: C Byrnes

in touch with leaders, mistake 8th, prominent halfway, briefly led 13th, disputed lead when mistake and lost ground 15th

12/1

7th

9

3rd Feb 2024

Good To Soft

3m 7f 76y

Class 2

14:15 Musselburgh

Temptationinmilan

10st 11lb

J: Philip Byrnes

T: C Byrnes

in touch with leaders in centre of group

8/1

6th

1

29th Dec 2023

Soft

2m 5f 70y

12:00 Leopardstown

Temptationinmilan

11st 12lb

J: Richard Condon

T: C Byrnes

Won twice over fences last season; made a low-key return over hurdles last month and was a 20-1 chance when pulled up at Fairyhouse 13 days ago.

14/1

Form: 6-3165 C

Last run: 35 days

W: 10st 5lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 119

Form & Verdict
Has shown his best form at about 2m4f on testing ground and it wasn't his first unconvincing effort at 3m last time at Newcastle when conditions were in his favour; has enough to prove in a race of this nature.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

0

10

9th Dec 2023

Soft

2m 3f 200y

Class 2

13:30 Aintree

Donnas Double

10st 3lb

J: Danny McMenamin

T: Sandy Thomson

Inconsistent during last season's first chasing campaign but he posted a win at Ayr (2m4f, heavy) in January and was a very close third there (2m4f, good to soft) on last month's reappearance; remains lightly raced and is not ruled out in a first-time tongue-tie.

10/1

Form: 15F541 D

Last run: 27 days

W: 10st 2lb

9 yo Gelding

OR: 112

Form & Verdict
The most exposed of these after 21 runs over fences, but he still doubled his tally when well on top over 3m at Carlisle (heavy) a month ago; the return of a visor seemed to help but whether it will do again remains to be seen, and this is tougher from 4lb out of the weights.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

6th

1

13th May 2023

Good To Soft

3m 0f 41y

Class 4

14:15 Hexham

Hold The Note

12st 2lb

J: Theo Gillard

T: Ewan Whillans

in touch with leaders, headway and went second 3rd

11/2

6th

9

22nd Apr 2023

Good To Soft

3m 0f 20y

Class 2

13:50 Ayr

Hold The Note

10st 2lb

J: Danny McMenamin

T: Ewan Whillans

The most exposed of these after 21 runs over fences, but he still doubled his tally when well on top over 3m at Carlisle (heavy) a month ago; the return of a visor seemed to help but whether it will do again remains to be seen, and this is tougher from 4lb out of the weights.

25/1

1st

3

26th Mar 2023

Heavy

3m 0f 110y

Class 2

15:45 Carlisle

Hold The Note

11st 6lb

J: Danny McMenamin

T: Ewan Whillans

Back to winning ways at Kelso (2m7f, soft) in December but unable to replicate that form since and well beaten the last twice; visor returns.

25/1

OUR TIP

Form: -50P15 D

Last run: 39 days

W: 11st 11lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 139

Form & Verdict
Has plenty of chasing experience for a novice and chose a good day to open his account in this discipline when beating two rivals in the Grade 2 Reynoldstown at Ascot (3m, good to soft); it was not his first notable effort at the Festival when fifth in a very warm opening-day staying handicap (soft) won by Corach Rambler; solid credentials back in novice company.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

2

22nd Apr 2023

Good To Soft

3m 0f 20y

Class 2

13:50 Ayr

Oscar Elite

11st 11lb

J: Harry Cobden

T: Joe Tizzard

Has plenty of chasing experience for a novice and chose a good day to open his account in this discipline when beating two rivals in the Grade 2 Reynoldstown at Ascot (3m, good to soft); it was not his first notable effort at the Festival when fifth in a very warm opening-day staying handicap (soft) won by Corach Rambler; solid credentials back in novice company.

9/2

5th

17

14th Mar 2023

Soft

3m 1f 0y

Class 1

14:50 Cheltenham

Oscar Elite

10st 12lb

J: Harry Cobden

T: Joe Tizzard

Runner-up in the 3m Albert Bartlett in 2021 and another rock-solid Festival run when third to Corach Rambler in this race last year (good to soft; when 1lb lower) especially as he bled from the nose; hard to catch on a good day since but was his best self when winning a three-runner Grade 2 novice at Ascot in February and ought to be set fair to go well.

11/1

1st

4

18th Feb 2023

Good

2m 7f 180y

Class 1

13:50 Ascot

Oscar Elite

11st 2lb

J: Harry Cobden

T: Joe Tizzard

Point winner in his younger days but he's 0-8 over rules fences and has a question mark over current form; useful on his day (finished third in last season's Ultima) but needs to stage a revival.

8/1

Form: P-F523

Last run: 13 days

W: 11st 2lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 130

Form & Verdict
Useful novice hurdler last season at up to 3m; now tackles his first handicap as a chaser and encouraging that he ran so well over 2m4f (short of his best) on his latest run at Cork (yielding); a danger to all should he make the anticipated improvement returned to further.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1st

13

18th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 3f 6y

14:35 Punchestown

Where It All Began

10st 5lb

J: Jack Kennedy

T: Gordon Elliott

in touch with leaders, prominent after 10th

9/1

2nd

2

13th Jan 2024

Soft

2m 5f 175y

15:07 Fairyhouse

Where It All Began

11st 11lb

J: Jack Kennedy

T: Gordon Elliott

in rear but in touch with leaders early, prominent after 2nd, not fluent and pushed along briefly 4 out, headway and pressed winner 2 out, switched right after 2 out, kept on but no match for winner

4/1

Form: -41412 C

Last run: 31 days

W: 10st 6lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 120

Form & Verdict
2-5 over hurdles and has the same strike-rate as a chaser, with both his wins in this discipline coming at Kelso (2m7f; soft/good); ran perfectly well at Haydock over a trip (2m4f) shy of his best and makes plenty of each-way appeal.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

5

16th Feb 2024

Soft

2m 5f 133y

Class 2

15:25 Kelso

Ned Tanner

10st 2lb

J: Sean Quinlan

T: N W Alexander

held up in last, steady headway but not fluent 4 out, went third after 3 out, disputing second when fell heavily 2 out

7/2

3rd

4

30th Dec 2023

Heavy

2m 3f 203y

Class 3

15:10 Haydock

Ned Tanner

11st 4lb

J: Sean Quinlan

T: N W Alexander

in touch with leaders

9/2

Non-runners

Ned Tanner

+o+e Accumulators

Payout
Exacta £72.10
Straight Forecast £61.04
Tricast £152.09
Trifecta £219.90

Selections

TOPSPEED:

City Chief

RP Ratings:

Sail Away

SPOTLIGHT:

Oscar Elite

POSTDATA:

Ned Tanner

The Times:

Where It All Began

LAMBOURN:

City Chief

Telegraph:

City Chief

Daily Mail:

City Chief

Daily Mirror:

City Chief

The Sun:

City Chief

The Star:

City Chief

Daily Record:

City Chief

WEST COUNTRY:

Oscar Elite

The Guardian:

Sail Away

D Express:

Sail Away