Author: Alan Kelly
Published: 10:49 05/11/2014
Haydock's Betfair Chase on Saturday 22nd November is starting to take shape now that most of the leading contenders have got that all important run under their belts, the one exception being the David Pipe-trained Dynaste who tends to run well fresh anyway winning on his seasonal reappearance in both 2011 and 2012 before finishing a creditable second to Cue Card in this race last year, his first start of the season.
The ante-post market is dominated by the Pipe runner (5-1 with Betfair Sportsbook), Cue Card (4-1 generally) and Silviniaco Conti (5-1 with Betvictor, Paddy Power and Betfair Sportsbook) but with the last two, despite almost certainly needing the run, disappointing recently it is the Jonjo O'Neill-trained Taquin Du Seuil who looks a good each-way bet at the 8-1 available with several bookmakers including Paddy Power.
The winner of the JLT Novices' Chase at the Cheltenham Festival back in March the son of Voix Du Nord looked badly in need of the race on his seasonal debut when third at Newton Abbot and again appeared to blow-up when getting outpaced three out in the Bet365 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby last week before rallying to snatch second place behind the easy winner Menorah. With Philip Hobbs' charge almost certain to miss Haydock due to the likely soft ground Taquin Du Seuil is fancied to confirm that form with the third and fifth horses home Double Ross and Silviniaco Conti, as those two runs should have put the seven-year-old spot-on for the first Grade 1 chase of the season.
Last year's winner Cue Card is sure to come on for his run in Exeter's Haldon Gold Cup but the impression was that connections were expecting more of the 13-8 favourite than fourth place and the jury is still out as to whether the gelding is back to his form of last season. Holywell, stable companion of the selection, may yet be switched to an alternative target with O'Neill stating that he intends to give his Gold Cup hope a light campaign before the Festival while most of the other possible runners are likely to head elsewhere, including Smad Place who has the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury as his first choice leaving Taquin Du Seuil as a great value bet to lift the valuable first prize in just over two weeks time.