Sunday Review (26/10/08)
Racing expert Dale McKeown gives an overview of the day's top equine action.
In the feature, the Old Roan Ltd Handicap Chase, the elite field were spread right across the track racing down to the second last. As fitness became an issue it looked as though Exotic Dancer was going to get his season off to a perfect start only to be picked up strides before the line by Knowhere for the Paddy Brennan and Twiston-Davies team.
Owner Mr H R Mould, Paddy Brennan and Nigel Twiston-Davies were quick to double up on the card as in the very next race Tramantano cruised through on the bit to beat Brave Villa.
Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh couldn’t be in any better form, notching up another easy double with the unexposed Massasoit in the Lexus Liverpool National Hunt Qualifier followed by the classy Kicks For Free. Racing in the colours of Trevor Hemmings, the lightly raced 7 yr old left no doubt that the Royal & SunAliance Chase is within his radar.
Lysander, representing the shrewd Ian Williams, was given an enterprising ride from young Michael Murphy. Benefiting from the riders 7lb allowance, Lysander managed to hang on despite tiring towards the line.
Alan King’s Squadron and the Paul Nicholls-trained Pierrot Lunaire dominated the four year old hurdle and it was a shame that the last named got very tired before falling at the last flight, leaving Robert Thornton in splendid isolation.
Trevor Hemmings looks to have yet another decent prospect in the shape of the bumper winner Cloudy Times. Trained by Sue Smith, the 5 yr old has now won two of his three races and showed a likable attitude to get the better of Fabalu.
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