Irish Saint:”three miles at Kempton is absolutely ideal”
PICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)
BetBright Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3.35 Kempton, 3m
Alan King, trainer of Annacotty
He has been disappointing this season, but he has enjoyed a few days out hunting recently with the Old Berks, so, hopefully, that might have sweetened him up. He seems fresh and well.
Joe Tizzard, assistant to Colin Tizzard, trainer of Theatre Guide
He’s in lovely form but he’s a fair bit higher up the handicap than he was 12 months ago. He’s had a good season and we know the track suits him but it’s a stiffer task than it was last year.
Dan Skelton, trainer of Three Musketeers
For some reason he’s started jumping right-handed so we went to Market Rasen and he won quite nicely with first-time cheekpieces. The step up to three miles will suit but it’s a very competitive race.
Tom George, trainer of Double Shuffle
Double Shuffle was placed at the festival last season but things didn’t quite work for him the after that. We had been making too much use of him and he was too keen and not quite getting home. We tried dropping him out the back and he didn’t enjoy that so we put a hood on him. He was up in the firing line but able to relax and back running as he should do, winning well last time. Kempton suits him and, although he is also entered in the National, this has been his main target since winning there at Christmas. He’ll also love the better ground.
Paul Nicholls, trainer of Irish Saint
He ran very well at Sandown last time, he just needed the run a little bit and the ground was too testing. Decent ground and three miles at Kempton is absolutely ideal and I’ve always had this race in mind for him.
Nicky Henderson, trainer of Cocktails At Dawn and Triolo D’Alene
They are both in the Grand National and have been waiting for good ground. They are both in very good form and love jumping and galloping and need a surface like this.
Nigel Twiston-Davies, trainer of Ballykan
He’s had a bit of a break and was fourth in the race last year. He seems to be improving and it looks quite an open race.
Fergal O’Brien, trainer of Viva Steve
He was disappointing at Warwick and we’re hoping the drop back in trip and better ground will bring a better result. He’s run well in the race before and we’re hoping to get back on track.
Harry Fry, trainer of Opening Batsman
He was second in the race last year and it’s a track he’s always done well at.
Neil Mulholland, trainer of Fingerontheswitch and Pilgrims Bay
Fingerontheswitch improved for a tongue tie and won well last time. He’s gone up quite a bit in the handicap for it. Pilgrims Bay has done very little wrong. They’re both competitive and deserve to take their chances in a race like this.
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