Edwardstone enhances Arkle claims

06-December-2021
06-December-2021 12:00
in General
by Russell Smith

Barbury-based trained Alan King will be looking forward to the Arkle Trophy at the Cheltenham Festival next March with his exciting novice chaser Edwardstone. The bay gelding won his opening Grade One contest over fences in the Close Brothers Henry VIII Novices’ Chase.

King’s runner was held up patiently by his rider, Tom Cannon, in the early stages of the two-mile contest. Once the race reached three fences from home, he made his move and was full of running, reeling in the favourite and race leader Third Time Lucki. Edwardstone’s jumping in the race was most impressive. This was just his third start over fences, but he showed no signs of inexperience, something which will have pleased the horse’s connections.

The Henry VIII Novices’ Chase winner is now 8/1 for the Arkle, which is on day one of the 2022 Cheltenham Festival. He is likely to represent one of King’s best chances of a winner at the leading National Hunt meeting.

The Barbury Castle trainer has won the Arkle twice before: he was successful in 2006 with Voy Por Ustedes, while a year later, he prevailed with My Way De Solzen. Since then, he has had big race wins at the meeting in the Champion Hurdle (Katchit, 2008) and Ryanair Chase (Uxizandre, 2015).

King’s Novice Was Unlucky in Early Stages of Chase Career

Edwardstone did not get off to a great start over fences. He first appeared in a chase last season where he unseated his jockey Tom Bellamy at the fourth obstacle. Connections then opted to return to hurdles for the rest of the campaign. Edwardstone subsequently made his seasonal reappearance at Warwick in a novice chase. He was travelling strongly in that race when he was brought down four fences from home. 

King opted to make a return to that same C&D at Warwick with his chaser and it was a more successful trip to the Midlands racecourse as he avoided any trouble in the race to score by an impressive seven lengths. Like his previous boss, David Nicholson, King has often introduced novice chasers at Warwick, where the fiven fences in the back straight give a fair test.

Strong Challengers from Ireland

Appreciate It leads the challengers from Ireland for the Arkle Trophy this year. He was unbeaten over hurdles last season and ended his campaign with success in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. He prevailed in that meeting opener by 24 lengths.

Willie Mullins’ runner has yet to appear over fences. However, connections have hinted that it is the plan for their horse this season. He is entered in the Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown on Boxing Day. The Irish horse also has an entry for the Grade One Faugheen Novice Chase at Limerick on the same day.

Ferny Hollow, also from Mullins’ yard, is expected to make the trip across for the Arkle. He prevailed in a beginners’ chase at Punchestown on his debut over fences. He made a couple of mistakes over his obstacles but, overall, it was a smart run on his first outing since March 2020.

This year’s Arkle could be one of the best renewals in recent years and Wiltshire’s King has a big player as he bids to complete his hat-trick in the novice chase contest.

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Barbury, 3m N of Marlborough, off A346, Jn 15 M4

 

Latest News

Edwardstone enhances Arkle claims

06-December-2021
06-December-2021 12:00
in General
by Russell Smith

Barbury-based trained Alan King will be looking forward to the Arkle Trophy at the Cheltenham Festival next March with his exciting novice chaser Edwardstone. The bay gelding won his opening Grade One contest over fences in the Close Brothers Henry VIII Novices’ Chase.

King’s runner was held up patiently by his rider, Tom Cannon, in the early stages of the two-mile contest. Once the race reached three fences from home, he made his move and was full of running, reeling in the favourite and race leader Third Time Lucki. Edwardstone’s jumping in the race was most impressive. This was just his third start over fences, but he showed no signs of inexperience, something which will have pleased the horse’s connections.

The Henry VIII Novices’ Chase winner is now 8/1 for the Arkle, which is on day one of the 2022 Cheltenham Festival. He is likely to represent one of King’s best chances of a winner at the leading National Hunt meeting.

The Barbury Castle trainer has won the Arkle twice before: he was successful in 2006 with Voy Por Ustedes, while a year later, he prevailed with My Way De Solzen. Since then, he has had big race wins at the meeting in the Champion Hurdle (Katchit, 2008) and Ryanair Chase (Uxizandre, 2015).

King’s Novice Was Unlucky in Early Stages of Chase Career

Edwardstone did not get off to a great start over fences. He first appeared in a chase last season where he unseated his jockey Tom Bellamy at the fourth obstacle. Connections then opted to return to hurdles for the rest of the campaign. Edwardstone subsequently made his seasonal reappearance at Warwick in a novice chase. He was travelling strongly in that race when he was brought down four fences from home. 

King opted to make a return to that same C&D at Warwick with his chaser and it was a more successful trip to the Midlands racecourse as he avoided any trouble in the race to score by an impressive seven lengths. Like his previous boss, David Nicholson, King has often introduced novice chasers at Warwick, where the fiven fences in the back straight give a fair test.

Strong Challengers from Ireland

Appreciate It leads the challengers from Ireland for the Arkle Trophy this year. He was unbeaten over hurdles last season and ended his campaign with success in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. He prevailed in that meeting opener by 24 lengths.

Willie Mullins’ runner has yet to appear over fences. However, connections have hinted that it is the plan for their horse this season. He is entered in the Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown on Boxing Day. The Irish horse also has an entry for the Grade One Faugheen Novice Chase at Limerick on the same day.

Ferny Hollow, also from Mullins’ yard, is expected to make the trip across for the Arkle. He prevailed in a beginners’ chase at Punchestown on his debut over fences. He made a couple of mistakes over his obstacles but, overall, it was a smart run on his first outing since March 2020.

This year’s Arkle could be one of the best renewals in recent years and Wiltshire’s King has a big player as he bids to complete his hat-trick in the novice chase contest.

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