Betfair Chase entries and comments


A fantastic entry of 19 has been received for the £200,000 Grade One Betfair Chase, the highlight of the two-day Betfair Chase Festival at Haydock Park on Friday and Saturday, November 23 and 24.

The three-mile contest is the first big test for the best British and Irish staying chasers and the entries for this year’s renewal are headed by 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup hero Long Run.

Robert Waley-Cohen’s seven-year-old, who is one of three entries for trainer Nicky Henderson, found life tougher behind a rejuvenated Kauto Star last season, chasing him home in the Betfair Chase and the King George VI Chase at Kempton over Christmas.

However, Long Run gained a decisive half-length victory over stablemate Burton Portin the Grade Two Betfair Denman Chase at Newbury in February before a good third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

His regular rider Sam Waley-Cohen said: “We are pleased with Long Run. He has developed into a big, strong racehorse which we are all very excited about. He seems to have had a good summer and looks great.

“I think you would have to say he didn’t achieve the heights last season that he achieved the year before. You always set your aspirations by what you have done in the past, but in many ways you can’t be disappointed about being beaten by arguably the greatest horse of all time.

“We were never out of the first three, having run in top-class company, and although we did not get the results we wanted, you can’t be too disappointed either.

“It’s very hard to tell the difference in a horse from one year to another until you get to the sharp end of a race. The results clearly stand for themselves in that he didn’t run to the same mark as he did the year before but, in terms of how Long Run felt through his races, I thought his jumping was significantly better than the year before and he was much more mature.

“All these things bode well for the coming season. I think there is an incredibly exciting group of horses out there at the moment and every year a new star is born and everyone will be trying to lay claims for the title of Kauto Star’s successor.

“All being well, Long Run will follow a similar plan to last season as you are a bit limited with options at this level. I can’t wait to race ride him again – riding him in work is a pleasure and riding him in races is a real joy for me.”

As well as Long Run and Burton Port, Nicky Henderson could saddle Bobs Worth, who remained unbeaten around left-handed courses following a gutsy success in the Grade One RSA Chase at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Another exciting entry is David Pipe’s Grands Crus, who disappointed connections in the RSA Chase, but had previously won the Grade One Feltham Novices’ Chase over three miles in great style. He could be joined by stablemate Dynaste, successful on Betfair Chase Day 12 months ago in the Betfair Don’t Settle For Less “Fixed Brush” Handicap Hurdle.

Grade One Arkle Challenge Trophy runner-up Cue Card is one of two entries for Colin Tizzard and made an exceptional reappearance in the Grade Two Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter yesterday (Tuesday, November 6), sauntering home for a 26-length success.

Nigel Twiston-Davies confirmed last week that 2010 Betfair Chase and Cheltenham Gold Cup victor Imperial Commander is on course for the Betfair Chase after being off the track for 20 months, while last season’s Cheltenham Gold Cup runner-up The Giant Bolster is a likely starter for David Bridgwater.

Champion trainer Paul Nicholls will be without Kauto Star this season, who has won four of the seven renewals, but he has four possible representatives headed recent exciting Grade Two Charlie Hall Chase scorer Silviniaco Conti.

The Ditcheat-handler may also saddle Cristal Bonus, who made a fine start to his second season over fences with a nine-length romp in the Grade Two Ladbrokes Chase at Down Royal on November 3, the enigmatic but very talented Tidal Bay and Grade One winning novice chaser and hurdler Al Ferof.

Last season’s Grade Two Argento Chase winner Midnight Chase could represent Neil Mulholland, while Weird Al may bid to improve on his third last season.

Three-time Cheltenham Festival winner Albertas Run could attempt three miles for the first time since the 2011 King George VI Chase, while Wayward Prince returned to form when second for new handler Hilary Parrott in Wetherby’s Charlie Hall Chase, with Midnight Chase third, at the weekend.

The entries are completed by course and distance winner Cappa Bleu, Cannington Brook and the classy Calgary Bay, who could have his first start for Mick Channon.

Kauto Star, whose retirement was announced last week, will parade at Haydock Park on Betfair Chase Day, Saturday, November 24. A statue will also be unveiled to commemorate one of the greatest chases ever, who won 16 Grade One contests including four Betfair Chases (2006, 2007, 2009 and 2011), five King George VI Chases (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 & 2011) and two Cheltenham Gold Cups (2007 & 2009).

Betfair spokesman Tony Calvin commented: “We look to have a tremendous line-up in store for the Betfair Chase once again, with all the best domestic staying chasers entered in the race.

“There may be no Kauto Star this year – though the other horses will, no doubt, get apprehensive if and when they see the four-time winner of the race parading before racing! – but it is packed full of Gold Cup winners and Grade One quality.

“And it will be great if Imperial Commander makes this his comeback race from injury. He won the Betfair Chase in 2010, having been beaten a nose by a certain Kauto Star 12 months earlier. In fact, I remember Imperial Commander trading as the odds-on favourite in the photo finish betting that year.”


Betfair Chase Day also features the £80,000 Grade Three Betfair. Don’t Settle For Less Handicap Hurdle over three miles.

First run in 2005, the contest has been over Fixed Brush hurdles since 2007. Fixed Brush hurdles offer a unique challenge, as they are more like mini-fences than the traditional hurdles seen at the majority of British racecourses.

The 50 entries for the 2012 renewal are headed by the mighty Big Buck’s, one of five entries for champion trainer Paul Nicholls. The nine-year-old is the greatest staying hurdler of all time and has won the last four renewals of the Grade One World Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. His latest victory came in the Grade One Liverpool Hurdle at Aintree in April, when he created a new record of 17 consecutive wins in Jump races.

Paul Nicholls recently revealed on his Betfair column: “Big Buck’s has been given an entry in the Betfair Fixed Brush Handicap Hurdle on Betfair Chase Day. It is a very valuable race, worth more than the Newbury race that is normally his reappearance, but money isn’t everything and we will do what is best for the horse.

“But, at this stage, Haydock is only a tentative entry for him, so don’t get carried away yet.”

Also among the entries is the 2011 John Smith’s Grand National hero Ballabriggs, trained by Donald McCain.

The past two renewals of the Betfair. Don’t Settle For Less Handicap Hurdle have been won by horses trained by David Pipe – Grands Crus in 2010 and Dynaste in 2011 – and this year there are eight entries from Pond House – Bakbenscher, Our Father, Poole Master, The Package, Close House, Knight Pass, Katkeau, Problema Tic and Goulanes.

For further information, please contact:

John Baker, Regional Director North West, Jockey Club Racecourses, on 01942 402609 or 07900 244248, email –
Tony Calvin, Betfair, 07881 508 999, email

Class 1, Grade 1, £200,000 Total Prize Fund. 3.05pm, Haydock Park, Saturday, November 24, 2012. For five-year-olds & upwards, three miles. Weights: 11st 7lb. Allowances: mares, 7lb. Entries closed November 6, entries revealed November 7 (19 entries). Five-day confirmation & £10,000 supplementary entry stage Monday, November 19. Final declaration stage, 10.00am, Thursday, November 22. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Monday, November 5.

Form Horse Age Owner Trainer
1/11343- AL FEROF (FR) 7 John Hales Paul Nicholls
P12/123- ALBERTAS RUN (IRE) 11 Trevor Hemmings Jonjo O’Neill
11/1321- BOBS WORTH (IRE) 7 The Not Afraid Partnership Nicky Henderson
21/2/242- BURTON PORT (IRE) 8 Trevor Hemmings Nicky Henderson
F/05110- CALGARY BAY (IRE) 9 Camilla Radford Mick Channon
15105-6 CANNINGTON BROOK (IRE) 8 Sara Biggins & Celia Djivanovic Colin Tizzard
2P//1334- CAPPA BLEU (IRE) 10 William & Angela Rucker Evan Williams
0/11P2-1 CRISTAL BONUS (FR) 6 Robin Geffen Paul Nicholls
2/1U212- CUE CARD 6 Jean Bishop Colin Tizzard
16/1420- DYNASTE (FR) 6 John White David Pipe
2/61114- GRANDS CRUS (FR) 7 Roger Stanley & Yvonne Reynolds III David Pipe
251U/1P/- IMPERIAL COMMANDER (IRE) 11 Our Friends in the North Nigel Twiston-Davies
11/2213- LONG RUN (FR) 7 Robert Waley-Cohen Nicky Henderson
5/F310-3 MIDNIGHT CHASE 10 Lady Clarke Neil Mulholland
31241-1 SILVINIACO CONTI (FR) 6 Chris Giles & Potensis Limited Paul Nicholls
U02142- THE GIANT BOLSTER 7 Simon Hunt David Bridgwater
32541-1 TIDAL BAY (IRE) 11 Andrea & Graham Wylie Paul Nicholls
4/P40P-2 WAYWARD PRINCE 8 John & Hilary Parrott Hilary Parrott
0P/13PF- WEIRD AL (IRE) 9 Brannon Dick Holden Donald McCain

19 entries

Class 1, Grade 3, £80,000 Total Prize Fund. 2.30pm, Haydock Park, Saturday, November 24, 2012. For four-year-olds & upwards, three miles.: Entries closed November 6, entries revealed November 7 (50 entries), weights revealed November 14. Penalties: after November 11, a winner of a hurdle 5lb. Five-day confirmation stage Monday, November 19. Final declaration stage, 10.00am, Thursday, November 22. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Monday, November 5.

Form Horse Age Owner Trainer
1/11P- ALAND ISLANDS (IRE) 6 J P McManus Tim Vaughan
PF0513- ALFIE SHERRIN 9 J P McManus Jonjo O’Neill
46013-1 ALPHA VICTOR (IRE) 7 Denton,Kinsey,Osborne Hse,Wesley,Yates William Kinsey
23P2-10 AMERICAN SPIN 8 G Collacott & R Gadd Luke Dace
44620-0 ARCTIC COURT (IRE) 8 Ray & Anita Anderson Green Jim Goldie
1/531U/-5 BAKBENSCHER 9 Three Line Whip Alan King
1121/46- BALLABRIGGS (IRE) 11 Trevor Hemmings Donald McCain
10/2210/- BARAFUNDLE (IRE) 8 Judith Ratcliff Jennie Candlish
1300-12 BAT MASTERSON (IRE) 4 Queen Maeve Racing Club Noel Meade IRE
11/4U21- BEAR’S AFFAIR (IRE) 6 G B Barlow Nicky Henderson
1/11111- BIG BUCK’S (FR) 9 The Stewart Family Paul Nicholls
36/1220/- BOUGGLER 7 Axom (XXI) Emma Lavelle
2F211-6 CAPTAIN SUNSHINE 6 Mrs Julien Turner Emma Lavelle
312/150- CEDRE BLEU (FR) 5 Paul Barber & David Johnson Paul Nicholls
212/314- CLOSE HOUSE 5 Roger Brookhouse David Pipe
21F01-0 CUCUMBER RUN (IRE) 7 The Goblyns Nicky Henderson
0450-21 EL DANCER (GER) 8 Ron Davies Lucy Wadham
15F3F-0 EXMOOR RANGER (IRE) 10 The Rangers Partnership Victor Dartnall
3110-01 FOX APPEAL (IRE) 5 Fox Inn Syndicate 3 Emma Lavelle
1- GOULANES (IRE) 6 Roger Brookhouse David Pipe
31-22 HOLYWELL (IRE) 5 Gay Smith Jonjo O’Neill
10/3112- KAFFIE 7 D H Morgan Kim Bailey
2P004-F KATENKO (FR) 6 A Brooks Venetia Williams
F0-2321 KATKEAU (FR) 5 Prof C Tisdall, J A Gent, R Wilkin David Pipe
02250P- KAYF ARAMIS 10 Isobel Phipps Coltman Nigel Twiston-Davies
1316P0- KNIGHT PASS (IRE) 6 Malcolm Denmark David Pipe
PP312-3 LACKAMON 7 Sue Smith Sue Smith
3232-00 LOS NADIS (GER) 8 Ian Dalgleish Jim Goldie
1F141-5 LOVCEN (GER) 7 The Barbury Apes Alan King
0001-R3 MAD MOOSE (IRE) 8 Middleham Park Racing XXXV & Partner Nigel Twiston-Davies
3500-23 MR MOONSHINE (IRE) 8 Sue Smith Sue Smith
P2P-010 OGEE 9 Sir Evelyn De Rothschild Renee Robeson
122/10P- OUR FATHER (IRE) 6 The Ives & Johnson Families David Pipe
4/1110F- POOLE MASTER 7 G Thompson David Pipe
40/1211- PROBLEMA TIC (FR) 6 Jo Tracey David Pipe
31/11F-0 RANGITOTO (IRE) 7 Charles Whittaker & Paul Barber Paul Nicholls
33/4053- REVE DE SIVOLA (FR) 7 Paul Duffy Diamond Partnership Nick Williams
F4060-2 ROYAL CHARM (FR) 7 Angela & Mark Tincknell Paul Nicholls
32U4-P1 SAPHIR RIVER (FR) 6 Sandy Seymour Lucinda Russell
0424/-11 SIMARIAN (IRE) 7 Peter Conway Evan Williams
012PP-1 SIR DU BEARN (FR) 6 Nic Allen & Carl Mason Robin Dickin
15140-4 SIVOLA DE SIVOLA (FR) 6 D O’Donohoe, S & P Nelson & D Silvester Tom George
062FP-1 SIXTY SOMETHING (FR) 6 Mrs A Timpson Paul Webber
0001F-0 SON OF FLICKA 8 Twenty Four Seven Recruitment Donald McCain
30P012- SUNNYHILLBOY (IRE) 9 J P McManus Jonjo O’Neill
12U5/5/4- THE PACKAGE 9 David Johnson David Pipe
31111-2 THEMILANHORSE (IRE) 6 John Hales Paul Nicholls
3P13P-1 TOP SMART 6 The Calvera Partnership No 2 Seamus Mullins
33236-1 TRUSTAN TIMES (IRE) 6 Mrs M E & Peter Armitage Tim Easterby
U20PP-U TULLAMORE DEW (IRE) 10 Give Every Man His Due Nick Gifford

50 entries
1 Irish-trained

My thanks to Racenews for the content


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