BRELAN D’AS can eat up the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup. He must have a big chance after his excellent second in the BetVictor here last time and runners from that contest have a cracking record in this.
He should relish this slightly tougher test of stamina after finishing well up the hill. Trainer Paul Nicholls has a superb record with five wins in the past decade and he can make it sixth.
Clondaw Castle is a potential improver and he showed his love of Cheltenham when finishing an excellent fourth in the Arkle. He blew the cobwebs away with a good run at Ascot last time and will have a big say if getting this longer trip.
Cepage was second 12 months ago and shaped well on comeback at Aintree behind Riders Onthe Storm who was favourite for this before an error in declaring him. He should run well for Venetia Williams.
Knocknanuss and Not That Fuisse should run well at decent odds. The former didn’t like right-handed Ascot last time and was a good third here in October.
Secret Investor has been backed and has the Nicholls record behind him. He’s been holding his own in good company and gets the trip well. There’s more to come.
VALTOR is better known as a classy chaser but he returned to hurdles to land a smooth win at Ascot last month. He stays this trip well and won’t mind some cut in the ground. This is wide open and Nicky Henderson’s are in flying form.
You have to give stablemate Igor a chance too. He impressed with an easy win at Ascot last time and deserves this hike in class. This longer trip could bring improvement too.
Champagne Well as a good second in a Grade 2 here last month and trainer Fergal O’Brien is having a stellar season. Seeing out this trip is a slight worry as he’s been beaten over it twice before.
Mossy Fen has done nothing wrong in winning at Worcester and Aintree so far. He shapes as though this longer distance will be ideal after finishing off strongly last time.
Kiltealy Briggs had 36 lengths in hand when scoring at Hexham latest. This is a much hotter contest but he stays well and can show more on just his third hurdles run.
Redford Road needs to improve on his second to Valtor last month but it’s early days for him too. He’s one to keep an eye on.
PENTLAND HILLS can climb the mountain from being a top novice to taking on the older horses. He was an impressive Triumph Hurdle winner at the Cheltenham Festival before proving that was no fluke in taking another Grade 1 at Aintree’s Grand National meeting.
He’s had just three runs over timber so there should be a lot more to come.
Stablemate Call Me Lord looks a big danger after a cracking comeback second at Ascot three weeks ago. He travelled well there and is proven in this grade thanks to a big win at Sandown in April.
Elixir De Nutz was fancied for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle only to be pulled out at the last minute. He’s bagged a couple of nice wins here and took the red-hot Tolworth Hurdle in style last time out in January. He may need this run but has a big future.
Ch’tibello won the County Hurdle in style and ran well in a hot race at Aintree. He’s another for the shortlist.
Gumball and Monsieur Lecoq both ran crackers in the Greatwood Hurdle here last time and are no pushovers. Both step up in grade with solid each-way hopes.
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RIVER ARROW can hit the target at a big price. She clocked a personal best when a good fifth in a Listed contest on her last run here in April.
She looked a little rusty when second on comeback at Uttoxeter when the dawdling pace didn’t help. The handicapper has given her every chance today.
Dame De Compagnie came back from 19 months off to finish a fair fifth in the Greatwood Hurdle here last time. She came with a late rattle and may have been a lot closer. She should improve fitness-wise and is a massive threat off the same mark.
Lust For Glory caught the eye when second at Ascot after a break. She had to make up a lot of ground before the winning post came too soon. There should be more to come.
Queens Cave improved to win at Exeter on just her third hurdles run last month. This is tougher but she is capable of better.
Vision Du Puy has had a couple of starts for the Skeltons and was a fair third in a Listed race at Wetherby so should be thereabouts.
Indefatigable was ahead of her that day but is worse off at the weights but needs to step up again.
WINDSOR AVENUE can get the better of Sam Spinner in what effectively looks like a match. Brian Ellison’s stable star has looked a real natural since switching to fences from hurdles where he was placed at Grade 2 level.
He jumped well at Sedgefield when scoring on debut and matched that when cruising home at Carlisle last time. This is his biggest test yet but there should be a lot of improvement to come.
Sam Spinner was second in a Stayers’ Hurdle so has plenty of class. He has won both chase starts at Wetherby which bodes well.
The worry is his careful jumping which is understandable at this early stage of his career over the bigger obstacles.
He also had a slight tendency to go to his right which isn’t ideal at left-handed Donny. He’ll need to improve to match the best opponent he’s come up against yet.
Aye Right has done plenty over hurdles and landed nice handicaps at Ayr and Kelso. He looks the type to make a nice chaser but this is a tough race to make his debut.
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TOMBEE DU CIEL showed enough in France to persuade her powerful connections to get the chequebook out. She was third in a Listed race at Auteuil on her last start in April and the winner of that has gone on to bigger and better things.
Nicky Henderson does well with his imports across the Channel and could have another gem on his hands.
Lord Lamington looks the pick of the home team after winning well on debut at Market Rasen. He tanked along there and should have a lot more to offer.
Navajo Pass was a decent Flat handicapper and loved the testing ground when winning on debut at Bangor before a solid second at Newcastle. More rain would help his chances.
Paseo stepped up his form when winning on handicap debut at Fontwell last time. He enjoyed the 2m3f trip there and this drop back may not be ideal.
Prefontaine is dropping in class after struggling in a Cheltenham Grade 2 last time. He won well at Kempton earlier but has a little to find.
Robeam ploughed through the mud to win a minor race at Sedgefield before a poor effort at Newcastle that makes him hard to fancy.
CLOTH CAP is a proper stayer who was an excellent third in the Scottish Grand National in April. He looked rustier than an old bike on his comeback fourth at Chepstow before a much better run in third at Ascot last time.
He probably would have won but for a late error and his staying power will be a real asset here.
My Old Gold really needed his first outing of the campaign when a distant fourth behind Lostintranslation at Carlisle last month.
The drop back to 2m4f wasn’t in his favour either. He finished last term with a good Listed win at Perth and has plenty of talent.
Treackle Tart was second in that Scottish race and dropped down a level to win nicely at Warwick in September. She wasn’t able to match that from a higher mark at Fakenham last time but won here last Christmas and can’t be written off.
Forth Bridge has had a little help from the handicapper after a couple of modest runs this season. He looked well off the pace at Newbury last time and should be happier today going back up in distance.
He’s only six so should have more to offer but needs to raise his game against these.
12.10 Botox Has
12.45 Good Boy Bobby
1.55 Brelan D’As (treble)
2.30 VALTOR (NAP)
3.05 Pentland Hills
3.40 River Arrow
12.25 Logan Rocks
1.00 Storm Control
1.35 Irish Roe
2.10 Windsor Avenue (nb)
2.45 Tombee Du Ciel
3.20 Cloth Cap
12.00 Lord In Red
12.35 Shantou Vow
1.10 Top And Drop
1.45 First Flow
2.20 Air Horse One
3.30 Full Spes
12.15 War Empress
12.50 Raymond Tusk
2.00 Majestic Stone
2.35 Dublin Pharoah
3.10 Above The Rest
3.45 Landing Night
4.50 Triple Spear
6.20 Phoenix Star
6.50 Soldier’s Minute
7.50 Big Daddy Kane
8.20 Cheng Gong
The Sun Racing team preview the action at Cheltenham and Doncaster this weekend