Harry Skelton – I wouldn’t swap Nube Negra for anything
Saturday at Sandown
Hardkore won nicely last time at Chepstow. He’s in a deeper race here (12:05), but he’s a horse we really like, and he seems to have improved a little for that run. We’re taking on a potentially top-class horse of Harry Fry’s in Might I, and he looks the one to beat. I think the track and ground will suit our horse though – there’re no negatives – and we expect him to run a very good race.
In the mares’ handicap hurdle (12:40) I ride Kissesforkatie for Jeremy Scott. She ran respectably at Lingfield, but I felt that she would be sharper for that run. The handicapper has given her a couple of pounds back since last time and I expect her to be competitive, but it looks a warm race.
Colden’s Dream was going nicely when he fell three-out at Leicester. The race hadn’t really started to develop, but I felt that I still had plenty left in the tank. I think the stiff 2 miles at Sandown will suit him well. He should be capable off this mark of 109, and while it’s a competitive race, he looks to have a good each-way chance.
Third Time Lucki goes in the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase (13:50) and has good experience under his belt after winning his last two races at Cheltenham. He’s come out of those well and the track and ground at Sandown should suit him.
You can make a case for quite a few in here and perhaps Do Your Job, who won on chase debut at Warwick, is the main danger. It’s never easy to win a Grade 1, but he’s got a great chance.
There are just five runners in the Tingle Creek (14:25), but it looks a very exciting race in prospect.
Nube Negra was very impressive in the Shloer Chase at Cheltenham. This is the quickest we’re run him back as normally he likes to have a break between his races, but he is in such good form at home and there’s only one Tingle Creek. The ground and track will be to his liking and we hope he’ll run a very big race.
Chacun Pour Soi comes over and brings a big reputation. He has only travelled over to England once before, when we finished ahead of him in the Champion Chase, and hopefully it will be the same again at Sandown. If he puts in a performance like he did at Punchestown last season he will be very hard to beat, but I wouldn’t swap Nube Negra for anything.
Protektorat at Aintree
Bridget is up at Aintree on Saturday and rides Protektorat in the Many Clouds Chase (14:05). He ran a cracking race to be second in the Paddy Power Gold Cup, when staying on strongly at the finish. We think the step up in trip here to 3 miles will really suit him, and he’s a Grade 1 winner at the track. This is a step up again as it’s the first time he’s taken on older, proven horses. This is going to tell us a lot more but we’re happy with him at home and hopeful of a good run.