PEUR DE RIEN may not have lived up to expectation over hurdles, remaining a maiden after nine runs, but he appeals as the type to make a good chaser. He went a long way to proving that true on his debut over fences at Uttoxeter last month. Peur De Rien jumped well in the main despite the worsening ground, and after being joined briefly two from home, he then kicked on, forging clear of the runner-up.
Even with the poor underfoot conditions, the timefigure he posted backs up the view that the form is strong for the grade – not to mention the fact that the second has boosted the form by going in subsequently. Peur De Rien just about sets the standard in this race, and with further improvement still to come, he is taken to maintain his unbeaten record over fences.
THE LATE LEGEND has proved progressive over fences this season, finishing runner-up in his first two outings of the season, before opening his account over the larger obstacles at Sedgefield last week.
He showed much improved form faced with an even greater test of stamina, travelling smoothly and taking over on the home turn, in control thereafter. That was an impressive performance and, provided the race doesn’t come to soon, he holds obvious claims of following up under a penalty.
It is highly likely that Vegas Blue and Panic Attack will take their place at the head of the betting for this race. The former a Nicky Henderson horse who was unbeaten in bumpers and the latter a former Willie Mullins charge – who made a very impressive successful start in the discipline of National Hunt racing before finishing down the field in the Champion Bumper on his first start for David Pipe.
They both undoubtedly make plenty of appeal, but KEYBOARD JOAN has achieved as much, if not more, than both of them over hurdles, yet is forecast to be more than double the price. Keyboard Joan produced a perfectly promising first effort over hurdles when fourth at Uttoxeter last month, a better performance than the one Vegas Blue produced on her hurdle debut. She may well do better with her recent run now under his belt, and she makes appeal from an each-way perspective.
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