Monday, 22 February 2010

Saturday's Big Race Preview: 15:05 Racing Post Chase Kempton

Hello again my friends. Let's take a look forward to what will, weather permitting, be this Saturday’s big handicap chase.

There are some strong trends in existence which I found on the excellent website , an invaluable resource for big race trends. Monday’s forfeits are in and we are left with a 16 string field to mitigate or obliterate.

Based on the trends from the past 10 years you are looking for a horse which is...

· Aged 6 to 8, (8 year olds in particular have won five of the last ten runnings)

· Carrying 10-12+ (9/10 recent winners, 4 being top weight)

· Officially rated 143 or higher

· Won last time out (9/10 recent winners)

· Run in 2 to 4 chases this season

· Won or placed in a listed or graded chase

· Won over 2M 5F+

· Course winner

· Trained by Philip Hobbs or Paul Nicholls

· Priced 10/1 or below (10/10 recent winners)

In the light of the fairly emphatic looking starting price trend we’ll have a look at those horses who have lithely limboed their way under the 10/1 bar

Nacarat – Ante-post favourite for the race, Nacarat certainly didn’t have a horse of the quality of Madison Du Berlais to beat when taking last year’s renewal by 9 lengths from Possol but is clearly not a million miles away in terms of class after finshing fourth in the King George over C&D at Christmas. Will like the going and must surely come very close again.

Fistral Beach – A serial silver medallist before finally scoring over 2miles 4 and a half furlongs on the Kempton turf last time out. Trained by Paul Nicholls, he will have the incomparable Ruby Walsh on board. Strikingly he will be in receipt of over two stone (out of the weights at the moment) from Madison Du Berlais so could be a threat though forging out over a 3 mile trip for the first time on the likely soft ground could be a tough assignment. Best watched at the price, though some might say you should wait to hear Paul Nicholls’ feelings in Saturday’s Racing Post, then send your money in the opposite direction!

Kilcrea Castle - Another who has yet to prove he can see out the trip, though affirmative noises have come from trainer Emma Lavelle on the subject. He has been the subject of a large gamble already in to 13/2 from 16/1, finished close behind the Sawyer and Miss Mitch in his first race in England recently and is one of the three in Saturday's race (along with Razor Royale and Kilcrea Castle) who fall under the strong trend for 8 year old winners. Fancied to have a strong chance.

Possol - A doubt for the race due to the expected soft ground, Possol has been at his most effective this season and recieves plenty of weight from Nacarat, his conqueror in last year's running. Definite claims should the going improve but one to hold fire on until the day.

Madison Du Berlais -The class horse in the race, he has the form edge around Kempton over Nacarat and therefore Possol. His performance last time at Cheltenham can be tippexed as the horse has shown that he just doesn’t get on with the stamina test at the Cotswolds track, running consistently below his best there. The record top weights hold in the last ten runnings of this race soothes some of the worries over whether he can give away so many lbs. He seems an each way steal at the 10s which are currently available.

Miss Mitch - Has recently beaten other contenders like Kilcrea Castle and will one lb better off with him here though one win in 9 on soft ground seems to suggest that she may find it tough come saturday.


Nacarat and Madison du Berlais stand out in terms of ratings and weighiproven ability in high class races and as that seems to have been a consistent winning profile for this race they are preferred with a heavy heart to Kilcrea Castle who may get a little side bet on the day.

Looking at our short list its a no-brainer for me value-wise and I'll back MADISON DU BERLAIS each way at double the price of Nacarat.

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