Joe Tizzard “If he can get into a nice rhythm he will run a very big race”
3.05 Kempton – The King George Chase – Thistlecrack and Native River
We are really pleased with Thistlecrack, in fact we couldn’t be happier with him. He’s doing work like he did two years ago, and is better than ever at home. He schooled well on Wednesday with Tom Scudamore. We now just hope that he can put it on the track as we have had a really clear run with him. He was a bit ring rusty at Haydock but he’s certainly improved for the start. If he can get into a nice rhythm he will run a very big race.
We have one more day to get through but we are quite excited about seeing him run. It’s kind of a last chance saloon with him and it’s nice to have him in such good physically.
He’s come out of the Haydock race well and has improved for it. This is a sharp track and probably the minimum trip for him, so he could do with a bit more rain which they don’t look like having. So they might just catch him out for a bit of speed again but I’ve known it plenty of times at Kempton when they start racing a long, long way out and it turns into a proper test where you have to stay well to win it. We all know that he’ll be doing his best work at the end and if he can just hold his ground when they do quicken then he won’t be far away.
Tactically I don’t think either Tom or Dickie need to be told much about how to ride the race. They know their horses are well, there looks to be plenty of front runners and pace in the race, so we’ll just leave it to the two jockeys to decide how to play it. Clearly Dickie will be looking to use Native River’s stamina and Tom will want to get a nice position so that Thistlecrack can just travel well through the race.
It’s a hell of race. For me as a racing fan I can’t wait to watch it. It’s good to have two good horses in the race but it’s a fantastic race to watch.
BOXING DAY RUNNERS
12.20 Wincanton – The Brothers
This is the minimum trip for The Brothers. The two owners are going to Wincanton and were keen to have a runner. Two miles might well be sharp enough for him
12.50 Kempton – Fly To Mars
He needs to take a big step up to figure but he’ll learn a lot more in a good race like this then he would in a 15 runner race on a Monday. He will go there and learn his trade but I’m not expecting him to be good enough
1.15 Fontwell – Little Vern
Little Vern is having a first run over hurdles. He ran a nice race finishing third in a bumper last time. This will be some more education for him
1.20 Kempton – Storm Home
This is a hell of race. We have been a bit disappointed with Storm Home in novice chases this season but this is a handicap and we’ve put a tongue strap on him just to try and help him out a bit. He’s a big price because it’s so competitive but he’s very capable and he’s dropping down the weights.
1.25 Wincanton – Padleyourowncanoe
Padleyourowncanoe has a good little chance. We have put Harry Kimber on him claiming 10lbs. I think the two and half miles will suit the horse perfectly. It’s a very competitive little race. He would have a very good chance.
2.00 Wincanton – Cucklington and Bears Rails
Cucklington and Bear’s Rails both have a bit to prove on this season’s form. They are handicapped on their best form but we just have to keep running them as they may come right in the spring.
Cucklington managed to win four last season and is paying the price now. He does love it round Wincanton. It takes us two or three runs to get Bears Rails sharp and then he comes right
2.30 Wincanton – Bally Longford
Bally Longford is dropping back in trip. He’s quite a good little traveller and he won’t mind the ground. It’s a race that he should be competitive in.
3.00 Fontwell – Lizzie Langton
Lizzie Langton did it well last time. She’s as good as we’ve had her. I think the handicapper has been fair with her so hopefully she can go and back that up again
Elegant Escape – Coral Welsh Grand National
Elegant Escape has come out of the Ladbrokes Trophy well. He has only gone up 4lbs and all the conditions at Chepstow will suit him. He looks an out and out stayer.