The feature race on day three of the Leopardstown Christmas Festival is the Grade 1 Savills Chase, where plenty of Gold Cup hopeful’s line-up. It’s a fantastic renewal and it’s good to see so many of the top horses taking each other on.
MINELLO INDO is a real tank of a horse. He’s a huge beast to look at always looks as though he could do with one more piece of work, but he’s very consistent and performs at a high level every time he races. He jumps well and stays well and it the one they have to beat and he’s only seven, he will keep on improving.
Delta Work, in his customary fashion, got beat on his first start of the season, but he does always improve for that first run and I expect him to go very well in a race he won last year.
At a huge price, I think Tout Est Permis will run very well. He’s still learning and I expect him to be switched off and ridden to pass horses late on.
The Tim Duggan Memorial Chase is always a hotly contested race and this year is no exception.
OFF YOU GO is undoubtedly going to go off as favourite and rightly so.He’s shown a good level of form of late, despite not winning. He’s always run well in the latter stages of his races, suggesting that he’ll appreciate a strongly run race over this trip.
If he runs to the form he’s shown in his last few runs, he’ll go close.
I do, however, think that Burning Ambition ODDS:[email protected]/1 is overpriced and will run a big race.
I think they’ve tried to campaign him over further to make him a Foxhunters’ horse but, arguably, his most impressive victory in a point-to-point was over 2m5f and he was second at Aintree in 2019, also over 2m5f.
He’s still lightly raced for a nine year old, and I think this race will run to perfection. His rider Maxine O’Sullivan is riding with great confidence and has had plenty of winners of late.
On his third in the Ballymore Hurdle at Cheltenham, The Big Breakaway sets the standard in terms of ability shown, and while he was beaten at 8/15 on his debut over fences, he should be a tough nut to crack with that experience under his belt. He stopped quickly on that run and his jockey had reported that too, so there may have been something amiss that caused his poor performance. A subtle reminder however, that they’re horses and not machines and can have off days!
If you’re looking for an alternative, Sempo would be next best in my opinion. He’s a very talented horse who finished a very good sixth in the Albert Bartlett Hurdle at Cheltenham in March. I don’t think we’ll see the best of him until he steps up in trip and tackles three miles in time, but the ability is there, and it wouldn’t be too wise to rule him out.
On his first three career starts for Charlie Hills, BRING HIM HOME showed lots of promise and left the impression he would soon be winning races in his right grade.
He has since been sold and purchased by Quantum and is now in training with Jedd O’Keefe. He has had three runs for his new stable all over what appear to be inadequate trips with his last two runs being over 1m3f and 1m4f.
He drops back to seven furlongs in this race and has a visor on for the first time. I expect him to be ridden prominently too.
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