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Gordon Elliott seems to have the juvenile division wrapped up like a Christmas present this year and ZANAHIYR is a heavy favourite for this one. It’s going to take a very special horse to beat him. This lad has been really impressive so far, and his performance at Fairyhouse was brilliant.
I’m going for Dan Skelton’s ALNADAM here and not just because he’s one of the favourites. He showed a bit of star quality last time at Sandown to beat Before Midnight by 6-and-a-half lengths. He’s up 8lbs for that victory, but he is the only one of these coming here on the back of a win. I reckon he has a decent chance.
SHAN BLUE absolutely hosed up twice at Wetherby in October, seeing off Snow Leopardess by a whopping 16 lengths last time out and he also won by 14 lengths at the track a couple of weeks before that.
He jumped for fun there and looks an exciting prospect, I’d be very upbeat about Shan Blue’s chances though. I would be worried about The Big Breakaway if Colin Tizzard wasn’t having such a torrid time this season. Enrilo for Paul Nicholls could be a danger.
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There are only nine runners in this, but I’m going for WANDRIN STAR. He was just touched off last time at Ascot last month. That was his first run after a big break and a wind op. A small bit of improvement from Kim Bailey’s challenger puts him right in the mix for this contest. It’s a pretty open race though.
I really fancy BLACKBOW here. Felix Desjy will certainly be favourite, but he never looked like he was going to win comfortably last time out at Punchestown. Blackbow is an absolutely beautiful horse who has always looked a chaser. He did it really well first time up over fences at Navan and he could turn out a bit special. He’s got more potential than anything else in the race.
Sit back, relax and enjoy the performance of EPATANTE. This will be a stroll in the park for the Nicky Henderson mare, in fact she might lap them! I do believe Silver Streak should claim second spot to her though.
It’s CLAN DES OBEAUX over Cyrname in the King George. Obviously, the Paul Nicholls-trained gelding is tailor-made for this race considering he is hunting a hat-trick in it. If you are looking for an each-way punt, Waiting Patiently could be your fairytale.
He went off favourite for this a couple of years ago and can certainly get in the mix at a big price. Clan Des Obeaux seems like a bit of a certainty for me, but Waiting Patiently could sneak into the places.
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