MAIDAY

Bris­tol has the edge over old ri­val Clan Des Obeaux

Daily Mail - - Aintreefes­tival - Dayone -

2.50 BET­WAY BOWL CHASE

GIVEN that four of the past five win­ners had won that sea­son’s king Ge­orge Chase, fans of Clan Des Obeaux will be op­ti­mistic the seven-year-old can re­verse Gold Cup plac­ings with BRIS­TOL DE MAI.

A re­turn to a flat track and a shorter trip should play to the strengths of Clan Des Obeaux who bat­tled on man­fully at Chel­tenham, but found the war of at­tri­tion too much, even­tu­ally fin­ish­ing fifth.

he trav­elled well for much of that race and the dy­nam­ics of Liver­pool should be a more suit­able fit for a horse which dis­plays so much speed. Bris­tol De Mai was some­what of a sur­prise pack­age in the Gold Cup, given he moved as pow­er­fully as any of his ri­vals un­til two fences from home, and he is af­forded the op­por­tu­nity to con­firm there is a future for him away from his beloved hay­dock.

he ran in this con­test last year — like four of the last eight win­ners — giv­ing a bold sight in front un­til worn down by an in-form Might Bite.

he tena­ciously saw off a num­ber of chal­lengers that day, in­clud­ing Clan Des Obeaux, and is nar­rowly pre­ferred to his old ad­ver­sary.

2.20 DOOMBAR JU­VE­NILE HUR­DLE

There’S ev­ery chance both PENT­LAND

HILLS and Band Of Out­laws will de­velop into se­ri­ous Cham­pion hur­dle con­tenders next sea­son and it is a tough call which, if ei­ther, will emerge on top to­day.

The for­mer re­cov­ered mag­nif­i­cently from a first-flight blunder in the Tri­umph hur­dle (Ad­jali 7th) to win with plenty in hand and is marginally pre­ferred over the Joseph O’Brien-trained duo, Band Of Out­laws and Fakir D’oudairies who both ar­rive cour­tesy of fine ef­forts at Chel­tenham.

Band Of Out­laws ex­ploited an at­trac­tive mark in the Boo­dles hand­i­cap (Fan­fan Du Seuil 5th) and wouldn’t have been out of place in the Tri­umph, while Fakir D’oudairies was 11 lengths adrift in the Supreme Novices’ hur­dle after los­ing his po­si­tion fol­low­ing traf­fic prob­lems at the top of the hill.

Song For Some­one is also a smart prospect and could be over­priced. BEST BET: PENT­LAND HILLS MAIN DAN­GER: BAND OF OUT­LAWS

3.25 BET­WAY AIN­TREE HUR­DLE

NICKY HEN­DER­SON has sad­dled four of the last eight win­ners of this race and he will be hope­ful BU­VEUR D’AIR can make amends for an early exit from last month’s Cham­pion hur­dle.

it was too early to sug­gest the se­lec­tion may have com­pleted an his­toric hat-trick in the blue riband event, but he pos­sesses a golden op­por­tu­nity to re­peat his vic­tory of two years ago here and claim his third course win from four starts.

The Willie Mullins- duo Faugh­een and Melon are two of his big­gest threats, and the for­mer makes some ap­peal now he steps back in trip fol­low­ing a game third in the Stay­ers’ hur­dle. how­ever, it could be the case his legs sim­ply aren’t up to win­ning at this level these days.

Melon would be only the se­cond Cham­pion hur­dle run­ner-up, from the past 17 that have tried, to win this. So Su­pa­sun­dae, se­cond in the last two run­nings, may emerge as the chief dan­ger. he could at least make the frame at a de­cent price. BEST BET: BU­VEUR D’AIR MAIN DAN­GER: SU­PA­SUN­DAE

4.05 RAN­DOX HEALTH HUNTERS CHASE

IR­ISH-TRAINED con­tenders have won four of the past five run­nings of this race and BURN­ING AM­BI­TION could be ready to re­alise his un­doubted po­ten­tial after swerv­ing Chel­tenham.

he ran in last year’s Fox­hunters at the Fes­ti­val and looked a threat un­til his stamina gave way on very soft ground.

he ap­pears to have been de­lib­er­ately kept fresh 12 months on and ar­rives in good heart cour­tesy of an au­thor­i­ta­tive suc­cess at Down royal last month.

The op­por­tu­nity to tackle de­cent ground should suit and he ap­peals with Derek O’Con­nor an ex­cel­lent book­ing.

road To rome is re­spected along with Ucello Conti, who was bowl­ing along in front in last year’s Na­tional be­fore un­seat­ing his rider four from home.

he was never com­pet­i­tive be­hind hazel hill at Chel­tenham, but may profit from a re­turn to more proac­tive tac­tics to­day. BEST BET: BURN­ING AM­BI­TION MAIN DAN­GER: UCELLO CONTI

4.40 RED RUM HAND­I­CAP CHASE

There is lit­tle doubt con­nec­tions ctions of Az­zuri have had this race in mind as he looks to fol­low up his sta­ble­mate and County hur­dle hero Ch’tibello by win­ning a pres­ti­gious spring fes­ti­val hand­i­cap after a wind op­er­a­tion and pro­longed ab­sence.

Dan Skel­ton has es­tab­lished him­self as a bril­liant tar­get trainer and the hand­i­cap­per has played ball by drop­ping the seven-year-old 12lb in three starts since the be­gin­ning of Fe­bru­ary.

But he is re­luc­tantly passed over in favour of DIEGO DU CHARMIL who is the class act in the race cour­tesy of a Grade 1 Chase win here 12 months ago.

it is fair to say he hasn’t fired since, but his last two out­ings have seen him try to keep tabs on Al­tior and he should be much more at home in a hand­i­cap pro­vid­ing the ground isn’t too test­ing.

Last year’s run­ner-up Thein­val prefers a de­cent sur­face too, while Moon Over Ger­many is also re­spected for a trainer with a good record at this meet­ing. BEST BET: DIEGO DU CHARMIL (nap) MAIN DAN­GER: AZ­ZURI

GETTY IM­AGES

Grey day: Bris­tol de Mai wins the Bet­fair at Hay­dock

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