Pendil Novices Chase Guide

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1. Bags Groove

Trainer - Harry Fry

Jockey -

Bags Groove had looked mightily impressive for Harry Fry, before being simply outclassed in the Kauto Star Novices Chase at Kempton over Christmas.

He was raced somewhat tactically differently under Noel Fehily on Boxing Day, but prior to then, he had risen up the ranks smartly including an effortless display from the front in a Grade Two at Wincanton back in November.

Had a short break since, and now drops back in trip and grade which looks a plus, on his return to the Sunbury venue.

Leading contender if managing to get to the front early on.

2. Amour De Nuit

Trainer - Paul Nicholls

Jockey -

You would be a fool to right off Paul Nicholls, and he could be well represented in this, starting with the 7yo Amour De Nuit.

Heavily campaigned this season, he has been racing for the most part in Class Three company, with three wins from six outings and now steps up to a graded party.

Most of his runs have been in small runner fields. and he was well below par here at Kempton when something was clearly amiss when tailing off to finish 46 lengths behind the third.

Needs to respond.

3. Burbank

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey -

Useful dual purpose horse, who returned to the scene for the first time this campaign at Leicester in January, when held in second in a three runner Novice Chase field.

Useful hurdler too - decent performance at Cheltenham behind stable companion Topofthegame, who has really made some progress as a chaser.

Fourth in the 2017 Neptune, placing in a Grade Three at Ascot - clearly the quality is there, so time to make some inroads over fences.

4. Capeland

Trainer - Paul Nicholls

Jockey -

Capeland has been a very persistent and dependable individual in the last couple of years, and is another chance for Ditcheat Trainer Paul Nicholls.

Since December 2017, he has raced nine times and has not finished outside the top two once - winning on three of those occasions.

The most recent of those was his victory at Ludlow, beating Tree Of Liberty and Sternrubin - who finished second to Capitane on Tuesday who provided Nicholls with his 3,000th winner.

This 7yo does have something to find from his recent mishap at Sandown, but plenty of ground to do so.

5. Good Man Pat

Trainer - Alan King

Jockey - Wayne Hutchinson

Good form in the book from his two appearances this term - both at Plumpton.

He was best of the rest behind Master Dino - who was the JLT favourite at the time, and Knocknanuss - contender for the Arkle, on his first start of the season, which was a very respectable performance.

The 6yo came on from that run to land the spoils at the same venue ten days ago in a decent affair, so clearly holds leading claims here.

6. Noruki

Trainer - Dai Williams

Jockey -

Only four career starts to date - despite turning 10yo this year, and has only featured once for Dai Williams in Britain.

That was a decent Class Four here at Kempton, and although running into a couple of top class horses, there was not really enough shown to think further progression is down the line.

He pulled up timidly having jumped hesitantly, and would be a miracle if he managed to get his head in front here.

7. Rio Quinto

Trainer - Olly Murphy

Jockey -

Finally made a return to the winners enclosure last time out at Lingfield six weeks ago, when landing a Class Four Novice Chase.

That was a much improved effort than what we saw on his seasonal return at Newbury, where he finished last when virtually pulling up on the run-in in a Pertemps Qualifier.

Decent hurdles form, now trying to establish himself as a chaser.

Solid run expected.

8. Secret Investor

Trainer - Paul Nicholls

Jockey -

Arguably the best chance of the three for ten-times Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls is Secret Investor, who has just been touched off at this level on the last two occasions.

One of those was at Wincanton, when nine lengths behind Bags Groove in a Grade Two.

Since then, he trailed Ok Corral in a Listed Race over three miles at Warwick, but looks a horse on the rise, and will attempt to upset Bags Groove's style of running this time.

Big player nonetheless.

9. Whatswrongwithyou

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey -

Useful hurdler in his day - racking up a couple of wins at Newbury amongst inferior company around this time last year.

Two starts as a chaser, finishing second to Brelan D'As who has gone onto win again since, before winning last time out two weeks into the new year at Ffos Las.

Both small runner fields, and will not get things all his own way here.

Chances.

10. Castafiore

Trainer - Charlie Longdson

Jockey -

The only mare in the field in perhaps one of the more experienced individuals in the field, and could land a hat-trick of wins of fences for the Slater Stockwood Nicholson Partnership.

After her debut over the larger fences at Southwell in December, this 6yo came clear to win prizes a Wincanton on Boxing Day, and at Haydock latest in a classy Grade Two at big odds.

More needed, but certainly open to fulfilling her potential.

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