Horse-by-horse guide and tip from Kempton




ASTERION FORLONGE

  • Coach: Willie mullin
  • Form: 433-1U
  • Chances: 11/2

A novice hurdler who has yet to record a top-level triumph over the fences, no doubt in part because of his persistent jumping errors. He looked a cut above when setting up the handicap company in Punchestown at the end of last season and appeared to be doing better than anything in the race before losing Bryan Cooper three times in the John Durkan earlier this month. He seems to prefer to go right handed which is a plus around here, but his fencing has never been under such pressure before and, despite all his talent, it is therefore difficult to have maximum faith.


CHANTERY HOUSE

  • Coach: Nicky henderson
  • Form: 3111-1
  • Chances: 11/2

Asterion Forlonge returned to third by winning the first-year Marsh Novice Hunt at Cheltenham in March and capped a very productive novice campaign (4-5) with a success of 32 lengths to three miles and a stadium in Aintree the following month. Was flattered by that bare margin after his main rival fell but has a lot to love about his comeback victory in a two-runner affair at Sandown last month and his jump will be a real highlight as he will debut in Kempton on Boxing Day. Has that good mix of speed and endurance for this kind of testing and it’s not too hard to envision him really submitting it to established artists, both here and in Cheltenham in March.


CLAN OF OBEAUX

  • Coach: Paul Nicholls
  • Form: 2321-1
  • Chances: 11/4

Limitations on display in regards to Cheltenham but always felt a little natural around this track and duly rewarded with back-to-back King George wins in 2018 and 2019. Last season apparently turned into a relatively disappointing season (only third, beaten over eight lengths, when 85/40 favorite for this race) until Paul Nicholls hit the cheeks in the spring, the horse quickly winning the Grade Ones at Aintree and Punchestown in superb fashion. Tended to need a run to get it back to 100% in the past so interesting that the Connections decided to come here for the first time this season, but however you look at this little poseur he is. clearly an important form player if he picks up near where he left off earlier in 2021.


FRODO

  • Coach: Paul Nicholls
  • Form: 4151-1
  • Chances: 9/2

One of Britain’s most consistent high class hunters over the past three seasons. He broke through to Level 1 in the 2019 Ryanair Chase before returning to the limelight last year winning a handicap from Cheltenham with a BHA rating of 164 and then doing it all in that event. Lead a decent fight forward in the Gold Cup at the Festival in March also before signing with a narrow victory over Mister Fisher at Sandown and started this season in the best possible way in pursuit of the three-mile champion Ladbrokes. Down Royal. Almost impossible to imagine that he won’t give his run again under Bryony Frost, although it is suspected that this year’s run may contain a bit more depth.


LOST IN TRANSLATION

  • Coach: Colin Tizzard
  • Form: 3P5P-1
  • Chances: 1/10

Has had something of a roller coaster career, certainly during his time on the fences, having sought to have the chasing world at his feet by the end of 2019. Came here as a 15/8 chance this year there, but disappointingly and straight back in song as he was third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup the following spring, he was unable to regain that kind of form (stopping here in 2020 t00 ) until he made a successful reappearance in Ascot – after another breathing operation – last month. Obviously physically fine again now, having been prone to breaking blood vessels in the past, and if he’s able to put on two back-to-back rush performances, he should be a perfect fit for how this race is going. as he travels three miles again. .


MINELLE INDO

  • Coach: Henry De Bromhead
  • Form: 1F41-3
  • Chances: 11/4

Looked first class from the start and won two first-year novice hurdles before narrowly running out when second to Champ in an extraordinary renewal of the RSA Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham in 2020 (Allaho is back in third). Started last year long before an inexperienced fall at Leopardstown seemed to put him back, but came back to boiling point to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup in a formidable way against his teammate A Plus Tard and the two-time winner previous Al Boom Photo. He looked a bit slow and out of shape on his seasonal comeback when he was third, beaten by five lengths by Frodo, at Down Royal but definitely fit again for that and every chance that ‘he figures up close despite most of his best fencing efforts on left-handed trails.


MONSIEUR FISHERMAN

  • Coach: Nicky henderson
  • Form: P1PU2-
  • Chances: 33/1

Still only a seven-year-old, such luck that we have yet to see him reach his peak as a hunter, which, coupled with the shape of his second neck behind Frodo in Sandown on his last visit, offers some hope. There are some obvious concerns, however, including the fact that he was unproven on the trip (rider not seated in a previous test at Aintree in April) and his lack of preparation is also worrisome given that ‘he’s never won since his racing debut in a bumper at this track. He’s 2-2 on the course overall, having won a rookie hurdle here too, but it’s worth the challenge overall.


SAINT-CALVADOS

  • Coach: Paul Nicholls
  • Form: 22 / 4U-
  • Chances: 16/1

Great demand to make his debut for a new yard and the first appearance of the season in a race as competitive as this, but Paul Nicholls has pulled off similar feats in the past. He almost made the transition from top handicapper to first-year winner when he was narrowly denied by Min in the 2020 Ryanair Chase and was far from dishonored when he was fourth behind Frodo in that race there. at 12 months. Ended his time with Harry Whittington on a low note, knocking down Gavin Sheehan in Sandown in February, and he probably has a chance both ways at best if most of the big guns hold out.


TORNADO FOLDER

  • Coach: Willie mullin
  • Form: 2543-5
  • Chances: 25/1

It clearly has a decent engine and looks quite versatile, but one could also argue that it is a bit ‘tripless’, not having been fast enough over two miles and also struggled to climb to the top. remaining row. He did the job well on his seasonal return to the John Durkan (2m4f) last month, but will need to make the most of his career if he is to be seriously competitive here.


Verdict…

Many of them like it a lot, hence the open nature of the market, but the two most compelling are last year’s winner Frodo, who seems determined to perform very well once again, and progressive. CHANTERY HOUSE.

The latter is arguably on the steepest path of all and remains open to as many upgrades as possible at the same time. He will adapt to any terrain, has a lot of equipment as well as a proven stamina, while his precise jumps will keep him in the hunt for a very long time if Frodo puts the pressure early on.

Of the top two in betting, two-time winner Clan Des Obeaux is preferred over Minella Indo, who might not be seen at her best until her return to Cheltenham in the spring.



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