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Ratings Update: Tingle Creek and Aintree

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In part one of this week's Ratings Update, Nic Doggett reviews the key performances on Timeform ratings from Saturday's racing at Aintree and Sandown, including the Tingle Creek.

Saturday’s Betfair Tingle Creek Chase was, at times, a nervous watch. The normally exuberant front runner Ar Mad’s jumping went to pieces after a juddering error at the eighth, while eventual winner Un de Sceaux (down 1 lb to 171) fluffed his lines at the last two. Willie Mullins’ first British runner this season returned victorious after being forced to battle hard against a race-fit, top-form Sire de Grugy (unchanged on 165) and knuckling down really well. His campaign will presumably depend on where Douvan goes, and he has the option of going back up in trip, but he will remain a leading contender for top honours whatever targets are chosen. Connections have suggested that he could defend his crown in the Sodexo Clarence House Chase at Ascot next month. God’s Own (down 2 lb to 165) made his own mistake early on but ran creditably in a race run ideally for him, finishing third, ahead of Ar Mad who rallied well after being headed and whose rating increases 4 lb to 161+. Sir Valentino (now 159?) seemed to excel himself taking a big step up in grade, though he was ridden to pick up the pieces late on and did so without threatening.

The jumping was marginally better in the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase an hour earlier on the card, though Supreme Novices’ winner Altior (from 152P to 158p) took off far too early at the second, and was also poor at the fourth. However, his jumping improved as the race wore on and he sealed victory over Charbel with a soaring leap at the last. Bookmakers (predictably) reacted by cutting Altior for the Arkle and it’s not hard to see why, with Supreme Novices’ fifth Charbel providing a much sterner test than sole rival Black Corton had on Altior’s chasing debut. The Wayward Lad Novices’ Chase at Kempton on December 27 is the next port of call. Charbel (up 3 lb to 150p) travelled well but was one-paced in comparison to the winner. He’s unlikely to run into many of that quality in novice chases, is open to further improvement and is well up to winning again; he looks a prime contender for a race like the Grand Annual, a race in which novices excel. Max Ward and Marracudja both found it all a bit too much, though the former travelled well for longer than his 20/1 starting price may have suggested was likely.

The best jumping performance came from Rocky Creek (up 8 lb to 149§) who belied his age but confirmed his class with a (nearly) all-the-way win in the London National. Paul Nicholls’ charge showed a rarely-seen resolution to battle back once headed and then see off the late challenge of Doing Fine (up 1 lb to 131). The winner will reportedly return to Sandown for a veterans’ race later this month.

Over at Aintree, three races took place which could have a bearing on the Grand National in April. The Becher Chase was won by National seventh Vieux Lion Rouge (unchanged on 147), who capitalised on a leg-weary Highland Lodge (up 5 lb to 140§) in the dying strides. Returning from a 231-day absence, the runner-up would have been a fairytale comeback winner for jockey Henry Brooke, just his eighth ride back after returning from a serious fall which led to an induced coma, collapsed lung, nine fractured ribs and a chipped shoulder. National runner-up The Last Samuri (up 2 lb to 161) was third – fitter for his reappearance fifth in a Down Royal Grade 1 – and will now head to the Grimthorpe at Doncaster, a race he won last season, while Ucello Conti ran up to his best in fourth (now 149). One For Arthur (fifth, up 5 lb to 138) caught the eye under a patient ride.

Grand Sefton Chase winner As de Mee (up 3 lb to 145) may be more of a Topham than National type but he remains one to keep on the right side of, comfortably accounting for Seefood (down 3 lb to 137) and Henryville (down 2 lb to 144) who easily fared best of his 16 rivals. However, the biggest National pointer arguably came from Many Clouds (up 1 lb to 165) who won the preceding listed race on the card. Second when attempting to give 5 lb to Don Poli 12 months previously, Many Clouds put in an exhibition round of jumping to go one place better on Saturday. He has had a wind op since finishing a disappointing sixteenth in the most recent renewal of the National, and is likely to be campaigned sparingly between now and a repeat bid in April, but is well worth a try at another Grade 1; the Lexus Chase in Ireland over Christmas looks a good option. Runner-up Le Mercurey (up 4 lb to 155) ran at least as well as he ever has, though possibly was only second due to the heavy final fence-fall of favourite Minella Rocco (now 160+). It's still possible that there's better to come from Minella Rocco (has Cheltenham Gold Cup entry), though maybe a nasty experience like this will knock him back.

Click here to read the Ratings Update for Fairyhouse

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HAYDOCK PARK 3:00

Saturday 25 November
2. CUE CARD 187
Harry Cobden silk Harry Cobden
Colin Tizzard
1. BRISTOL DE MAI (FR) 181+
Daryl Jacob silk Daryl Jacob
Nigel Twiston-Davies
5. TEA FOR TWO 180
Lizzie Kelly silk Lizzie Kelly
Nick Williams hot trainer
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LATEST HORSE RACING RESULTS

9:15 NEWCASTLE

1st Tom Eaves silk 1. BOBBY JOE LEG 33/134
2nd Dougie Costello silk ¾ 4. KINGOFMERROWS (IRE) 9/25.5
3rd Paul Mulrennan silk hd 8. LIMONCINO (IRE) 20/121
J: Tom Eaves  
T: Ruth Carr  
All 8 ran.
FULL RESULT

9:00 DUNDALK

1st R. P. Downey silk 7. CLARE ISLAND (IRE) 8/19
2nd C. P. Hoban silk 13. RED ALL STAR (IRE) 12/113
3rd Shane Foley silk ½ 4. TIDAL'S BABY 8/19
J: R. P. Downey (3)  
14 ran. NRs: 15  16  17 
FULL RESULT

8:45 NEWCASTLE

1st Daniel Tudhope silk 8. INSURPLUS (IRE) 3/14jf
2nd Jack Osborn silk 1 1. TELLOVOI (IRE) 33/134
3rd Tom Eaves silk 5. HONEY BADGER 5/16
T: Jim Goldie  
13 ran. NRs: 4 
FULL RESULT

8:30 DUNDALK

1st Ross Coakley silk 10. INVINCIBLE RYKER (IRE) 5/23.5f
2nd R. P. Downey silk ½ 7. RIVELLINO 10/111
3rd Oisin James Orr silk 1 8. ARBOURFIELD (IRE) 4/15
J: Ross Coakley  
14 ran. NRs: 12  16  17 
FULL RESULT

8:15 NEWCASTLE

1st Daniel Tudhope silk 1. BREANSKI 6/42.5f
2nd Tom Eaves silk 8. REY LOOPY (IRE) 9/25.5
3rd Jamie Gormley silk ns 2. NEWMARKET WARRIOR (IRE) 5/23.5
8 ran. NRs: 7  9 
FULL RESULT

8:00 DUNDALK

1st R. P. Whelan silk 11. PRINCESS YAIZA (IRE) 11/26.5
2nd C. T. Keane silk ½ 4. ELEGANT DRAMA (IRE) 4/61.66f
3rd R. P. Downey silk ¾ 1. AISHLING'S SECRET 12/113
J: R. P. Whelan  
14 ran. NRs: 10  16  17 
FULL RESULT

7:45 NEWCASTLE

1st Phillip Makin silk 1. MALASPINA (ITY) 9/25.5
2nd Jason Hart silk 7. PLANETARIA (IRE) 28/129
3rd Rowan Scott silk 9. GUN CASE 10/34.33
T: Ivan Furtado  
9 ran. NRs: 3 
FULL RESULT

7:30 DUNDALK

1st C. T. Keane silk 3. CHECK YOUR POCKETS (USA) 6/17
2nd R. P. Cleary silk nk 15. MOJAMBO (IRE) 25/126
3rd K. J. Manning silk 8. HAUNTING VOCALS (IRE) 10/34.33f
J: C. T. Keane  
14 ran. NRs: 12  16  17 
FULL RESULT

7:15 NEWCASTLE

1st Tom Eaves silk 7. CASTERBRIDGE 4/15jf
2nd Daniel Tudhope silk 6. DUNDUNAH (USA) 25/126
3rd Sean Mooney silk nk 14. ORIENTAL LILLY 40/141
J: Tom Eaves  
T: Eric Alston  
13 ran. NRs: 4 
FULL RESULT
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