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Weekly Horse Racing Blog: Kempton Fire / King George Betting Odds / Weekend Round Up


Twisted Fire Starters

I’m not really sure what thoughts go through the mind of an arsonist or a vandal but I was reading with disbelief this morning that the third-last fence at Kempton Park had been destroyed by a fire recently.

A spokesperson for the Jockey Club said: “The third-last fence at the course suffered an act of vandalism at the beginning of October. This was reported to the police.”

Kempton’s clerk of the course, Barney Clifford told The Guardian: “It’s a real inconvenience, but that’s life. We’ve already put part of the frame in and the birch has now arrived. My staff are kept busy because we have so many race days here but we’ll get to it and hopefully it’ll be built for Boxing Day.”

The King George VI Chase on Boxing Day is main highlight of the Christmas racing schedule and the 2020 renewal is shaping up to be a “cracker” after some of the recent results from high profile races.


Early King George Betting Odds

888sport currently bet: Cyrname (2/1), Clan Des Obeaux (5/2), Lostintranslation (8/1), Champ, Monalee (12/1), Allaho (14/1), Kemboy (14/1) 20/1 bar.

At this juncture, 8/1 about Lostintranslation looks a superb price given the likelihood of him bouncing right back from a bogged down performance in the Betfair Chase at Haydock Park.


Weekend Wrap

The racing at Haydock Park on Saturday had quite an open feel to it at the tail end of last week, but the weather quickly deteriorated on race day itself and the heavy ground performers inevitably came to the fore.

Twice a winner of the Betfair Chase already, Bristol De Mai lifted a third Betfair Chase with a gutsy performance in Haydock’s traditional testing conditions. The Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained grey put in another impressive round of jumping in the hands of Daryl Jacob.

In the van throughout, Bristol De Mai was still full of running turning for home as both Clan Des Obeaux and Lostintranslation loomed up behind him.

However the challenge from the Tizzard runner was short-lived as he dropped tamely away, leaving Clan Des Obeaux as the only conceivable danger – but the nine-year-dug deep and pulled away again to score by two lengths.

Daryl Jacob said after the race: “I’d love to see him in the Grand National.”


Ones for the Notebook

Also at Haydock, the David Pipe-trained Main Fact suddenly appeared out of the gloom with a late flourish to extend his winning run to nine and lift the Stayers’ Handicap Hurdle.

With much of the last week’s ante-post betting for the race focused around The Jam Man, the Pipe runner went off a pretty generous 13/2 chance after trading at 8/1 for most of the week. In hindsight that’s a fair old starting price for an unbeaten horse.

Meanwhile on the same card, Master Tommytucker looked like a completely reformed character once more after putting in a completely blemish free round to take the Graduation Chase. The nine-year-old really has literally graduated in his last two runs.


Ascot Update

Over at Ascot, Kim Bailey’s Imperial Aura was supported in the antepost Cheltenham betting markets after he took the Chanelle Pharma 1965 Chase.

Bailey said afterwards: “I don’t know where we go next. He will probably have one run between now and Cheltenham. I thought we would get today done with and from the result of today we knew where we were going.

“He was either a Ryanair horse or we were going for something completely different.”

Bailey also enjoyed further success at the same fixture when First Flow came out on top in the Coral Hurst Park Handicap Chase.

“He has got no right to be as good as he is, but that is his fourth win on the trot. He is an extraordinary horse” said Bailey.


And finally…

And finally on the Saturday wrap, Song For Someone led from start to finish to take Grade Two honours in the Coral Hurdle. Nico de Boinville executed the plan to a tee aboard Tom Symonds’ runner to put Call Me Lord and Laurina firmly in their place.

Gold Cup hope Minella Indo won the Grade 2 Make Your Best Bet Chase at Navan on Sunday in a hack canter, with the online bookmakers now making Henry De Bromhead’s charge a general 7/1 poke for the big race in March.