Turning Gold was an excellent fifth in the Fred Winter at Cheltenham and won in heavy ground on penultimate run. He won’t mind the testing conditions here but has only had eleven days to recover from what was a tough race and for that reason I am happy to look elsewhere.
Knight Destroyer was a heavy faller in the Fred Winter but as a result could have a fitness advantage over the aforementioned Turning Gold and could be a danger if the confidence hasn’t been knocked following that fall.
Eragon De Chanay will relish conditions and is proven over the trip but is another who ran at Cheltenham so preference is for the Paul Nicholls runner Malaya who is yet to finish outside the first two since racing over hurdles, was a solid second to Redicean last time out and has previous winning form in soft ground.
Malaya (WIN) – NAP
Monsieur Gibraltar is a previous course and distance winner having won this race by nine lengths last year, is only 4lbs higher today and has won on return from a break on three separate occasions so looks to have a great chance of winning again here.
Midnight Cowboy has won three from six over fences but all victories came on good ground and his only run on softer ground saw him disappoint somewhat so the bigger danger could be Marinero who should find this easier than the Kim Muir at Cheltenham where he was pulled up.
Monsieur Gibraltar (WIN)
written by Dean Kilbryde