Saturday 3rd November 2018
As the National Hunt season starts to gather momentum Wetherby stages one of, if not it’s best card of the season which is none other than Charlie Hall Chase Day. A fine card of National Hunt racing of which my preview comes from the feature contest the Charlie Hall Chase itself. Enjoy!
Wetherby – (2.40) (Class 1) (Grade 2) (3m 45y)
The Charlie Hall Chase is a Grade 2 affair that’s contested over a distance of slightly over three miles and this year’s renewal see’s the Colin Tizzard trained Thistlecrack (2/1) head affairs. Thistlecrack was last seen when finishing fourth in the King George behind Might Bite. Winner of the same race the year before in emphatic style this once strong Gold Cup hope will be looking to return to the form that saw him as one of the most exciting horses in training. Paul Nicholls Clan Des Obeaux (4/1) takes his place as just about the second favourite in the betting and he’s a horse that I expect has a big season ahead of him. Last seen when finishing third in the Aintree Bowl behind Might Bite he ran some solid races last season including when finishing runner up in the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup at the Cheltenham December Meeting. A live player. Also representing Paul Nicholls in this contest is a horse that was somewhat of a revelation last term and that’s of course Black Corton (5/1) who defied his critics each time he ran with several impressive wins after forming a formidable partnership with Bryony Frost.
Last year’s winner Bristol De Mai (5/1) looks questionable to whether he’ll take his place at the moment due to the lack of rain the course has received as he’s a well known lover of cut in the surface. If the rain does come though and it arrives in force expect him to be backed sufficiently for a bold bid to retain his crown. The Tom George trained Double Shuffle (11/2) put in his best run by some way last term when second in the King George, he did put together several placed efforts at the beginning of last term and will be looking to recapture that form should he feature here. Last year’s third Definitly Red (8/1) is also entered in a later race on the card so his participation is also up in the air. As could be said for any of the Gigginstown trio of Don Poli (20/1), Outlander (20/1) and Alpha Des Obeaux (20/1). Don Poli is certainly the most interesting of the three, one of my personal favourites over the jumps and i’d love to see him take his place in the line up. Dan Skelton’s Virgilio (10/1) comes here off the back of two successive victories in the Spring/Summer the latter of these victories come in Uttoxeter’s Summer Cup. This presents a whole new proposition within this company however he’s still fairly unexposed and could well have more to offer. Anthony Honeyball’s Regal Encore (33/1) makes up the field at the moment and he’s a horse that will need to step up on the form he showed last term. He did however win a Listed event on his penultimate start.
🥇1ST: CLAN DES OBEAUX (9/2)
🥈2ND: VIRGILIO (10/1)
🥉3RD: THISTLECRACK (2/1)
‘A race that’s looking very open as things currently stand, Thistlecrack if returning to the dominant force of old would put this field away with minimal fuss however we don’t quite know if he still is anywhere near said force. Clan Des Obeaux should have more to offer this term and he could well start off with a bold showing in this for Paul Nicholls. The in form Virgilio also looks to have more to offer and he can also go well in this. Should he take his place Definitly Red would be a big player however his participation is looking unlikely.’