Kelso race is possible
GRAND National entry Seeyouatmidnight could make his comeback after an 11-month absence i n Saturday’s totepool.com Premier Chase, weather permitting, at Kelso.
Sandy Thomson’s smart stayer has been sidelined since finishing second over hurdles at the Borders venue last March.
Thomson, who is highly regarded as a trainer, reports the 10-year-old to be ready for a return to the fray following a racecourse gallop at Newcastle at the weekend.
“The weather looks pretty awful, but if it’s off, I’ve heard they’re hoping to re-schedule, so that would give me an option,” said the Berwickshire-based handler.
“I’m really pleased with him. He worked after racing at Newcastle and I was very happy with the way he shaped.”
Stablemate Seldom Inn would be unlikely to take up the engagement, though.
“I just stuck him in but it looks a very competitive race this year,” said Thomson.
“I’ll try to keep them apart. Seldom Inn might wait for the veterans’ chase at Carlisle. We’ll just have to wait and see.”
The 13 entries are headed by the Nigel TwistonDavies-trained Bristol De Mai.
The seven-year-old will try to return to winning ways after being beaten at Kempton and Cheltenham since landing a runaway success in the Betfair Chase at Haydock on November.
American, who finished one place ahead of Bristol De Mai when runner-up to Definitly Red in the Cotswold Chase, has been given the option by trainer Harry Fry.
Paul Nicholls is double-handed with Vicente and Warriors Tale while the only Irish possible is the 13-year-old Maggio from Pat Griffin’s County Dublin stable.
Jamie Snowden could field Double Treasure, although he also has an entry in the Ultima Handicap Chase on the opening day of the Festival on March 13.
Snowden said: “He won three races in the autumn, culminating in a nice win at Cheltenham.
“The BetVictor Gold Cup was too soft for him as it rained all day and he didn’t run a bad race considering.
“I am quite keen to step him up in trip now. He has had a nice winter break.
“We might look at the Listed chase at Kelso on Saturday or the Ultima at the Festival.
“He could be a nice one to go to Aintree with for the Topham as he jumps so well and that would suit him. He might well be a Grand National horse next season.”