Charlie Hall Chase Day 2021
Author: Jordan Yates
“Welcome to my Saturday Preview for this week where I’ve had a slight change of plan. With there being a lot of graded action over the cards this week I’ve decided to share my thoughts on all the big races that will be shown on ITV throughout the afternoon, and if you don’t like that then that’s your issue really.
I hope you all enjoyed the Down Royal Friday Preview, a great day’s racing with some real top performers out on the day. Zanahiyr was mightily impressive and there was even a 5/1 winning selection for the page Espion Du Chenet doing the business.
As ever though, hope you enjoy the read!”
The first race I’m going to be taking a look at is the 1.55 at Wetherby which is a Listed Mares Hurdles over two miles. The one I like here is Her Indoors at around 6/1 for Alan King and Adrian Heskin, she had a fine campaign last season when winning a Listed race at Doncaster and then signed off with a win in a Grade 3 at Cheltenham in April. She returned to the track at Nottingham earlier this month where she had a spin on the flat and put in an eye-catching performance, staying on late to finish third. That was a fine preparation to blow away the cobwebs and she’s every chance of running a decent race here.
The Bet365 Hurdle comes up at 2:30 at Wetherby over three miles. It’s going to be Paisley Park here for me for the combination of Emma Lavelle and Aidan Coleman, the former Stayers Hurdle winner hasn’t been quite the force he once was in recent times, however, he still won a Long Walk Hurdle last season and had excuses for his showing at Aintree. He wouldn’t have to be at the peak of his powers to take this particular contest and I’ll side with him getting the job done and adding another graded success to his illustrious CV.
The feature of the day at Wetherby takes place at 3:05 which is of course the Charlie Hall Chase, a Grade 2 event over three miles. I find it hard to see past the the top-rated Cyrname here for Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden. He’s currently a best price of 11/8 to retain his crown from last year and he’s once again considerably clear on ratings. Things didn’t go to plan after he won this race last year as he was pulled up in the King George and then at Ascot after, however, he’s been given time off to recover and he’s got a lot in hand over these. For me, his main danger looks to come in the form of Clondaw Castle who’s seemingly still progressing.
The first race I’ll be taking a look at from Ascot is the 2.10 which is the Listed London Handicap Hurdle over a mile and seven and a half furlongs. The one I like here is one of my horses to follow for season in Boothill for Harry Fry and Sam Twiston-Davies. He suffered a setback last season and as a result hasn’t been seen since December of last year, however, on his last appearance on a racecourse he demolished a field within novice company by over nine lengths. I think he’s potentially very smart, and whilst he’ll probably have to be to win this on the back of a lengthy absence, he’s proved he can go well fresh before and I think he’s got a big future ahead of him.
Next up at Ascot is the 2.45 which is a Listed Handicap Chase that’s contested over two miles and a furlongs. Editeur Du Gite is the favourite here, and probably rightfully so on the back of his proven form at the track. I’ve taken him on though and I’ve done that with Grey Diamond who’s around an 11/2 chance and represents Sam Thomas, and is another that’s set to be ridden by Sam Twiston-Davies. I’ve become a big fan of the Thomas yard, I put up at Before Midnight on here last week who bolted up at Cheltenham for the same connections and this is a similar set of circumstances. This seven-year-old grey is still relatively unexposed and will gets weight of all of his main rivals here, I think he’s got a very decent chance of running a big race.
The concluding race for my preview at Ascot is the 3:20 which is the London Gold Cup Handicap Chase, which is a Grade 3 affair that’s contested over three miles. I think this can go to the 2019 winner Vinndication for Kim Bailey and David Bass who’s currently trading at around the 3/1 mark. He hasn’t managed to get his head in front after his impressive win in this contest a couple of years ago but he has been lightly raced in that time and has ran some solid races in defeat, finishing fourth at a Cheltenham Festival and second by Cyrname in last year’s Charlie Hall. He went over hurdles for the back-end of last season which didn’t work out for him, but back over fence and running off a mark he’s proven he can be competitive off in past I think he’s got more than a fighting chance to defy top weight against rivals that I think he’s superior too.
We do have Grade 1 action on the day and this comes from Down Royal at 2:50 where their Champion Chase takes place over three miles. This is all about the Cheltenham Gold Cup hero Minella Indo for me who will be partnered on this occasion by another Cheltenham hero in the form of Rachael Blackmore. Henry De Bromhead’s eight-year-old probably hasn’t reached the peak of his powers yet and you’d imagine we’ll start to see that this season, I think he’ll take a lot of stopping here but he will need to be on the ball to deal with challengers such as King George winner Frodon and Galvin who’s also a Cheltenham Festival winner.