Wild West to stake a claim in Welsh Na­tional

The Irish Times - Sports Weekend - - SPORTS -

Tom Ge­orge feels con­di­tions will be per­fect for Wild West Wind in the re­ar­ranged Coral Welsh Na­tional at Chep­stow to­day.

Rained off on De­cem­ber 27th, the ground re­mains ex­tremely test­ing but hav­ing al­ready won the trial for this race, Wild West Wind has proven his suit­abil­ity and the de­lay should play into his hands, ac­cord­ing to the Slad-based han­dler.

Ge­orge said: “He is in great form. The ground won’t be too soft for him as he loves heavy ground. Prob­a­bly the fact they have put it back 10 days might be to our ad­van­tage as it would have come plenty soon enough af­ter the trial race he won there.

“It didn’t take much out of him, but ev­ery stay­ing chaser is bet­ter for four weeks of rest than two weeks. He is a dour stayer and loves heavy ground. Ev­ery­thing is in his favour, it is just a ques­tion of if he is good enough.”

Tar­get

Fer­gal O’Brien’s Mid­lands Na­tional win­ner Chase The Spud has had the race as his tar­get since he hit the tar­get at Hay­dock in Novem­ber. “Paddy (Bren­nan) schooled him on Mon­day and he jumped re­ally well so we are look­ing for­ward to it,” said O’Brien. “He has got a lot of weight, but he has earned that weight. He will love the ground and trip so there are a lot of boxes ticked.

“Michael Scu­d­amore’s horse, Mys­teree, who was se­cond be­hind us at Ut­tox­eter, has a big pull in the weights with us, but Chase The Spud is in great form.”

Like his old ri­val Chase The Spud, Mys­teree is an­other horse who will not be per­turbed by the ground. Trainer Michael Scu­d­amore, who won the race in 2012 with Mon­beg Dude, said: “He’s such a laid-back char­ac­ter.

“He did his fi­nal piece of work on Tues­day morn­ing and seems all primed for the big day. He does han­dle very heavy ground. He’ll go on most grounds.”

Kerry Lee tri­umphed with Moun­tain­ous the last time the race was saved un­til Jan­uary and runs Al­fie Spin­ner and Bish­ops Road. Lee said: “Al­fie Spin­ner is in top form and I’m re­ally happy with him. In fact, I would say he has never looked bet­ter.”

Tom Ge­orge runs Wild West Wind at Chep­stow to­day

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