Formidableopponent went down fighting at Musselburgh yesterday when trying to win his sixth race in a row.
The fast-finishing 2/1 favourite was only denied by a neck by Proud Gamble in the Racing UK HD Handicap Chase and probably would have won had he not made a mistake at the final ditch, three out.
William Young, trainer of the top weight, said: “He was a wee bit unlucky, with that mistake at the ditch, and I’ll have a word with my dad who is the owner to see where we go from here. He’s certainly entered in a few races but I’m not sure where we go from here.”
Proud Gamble was ridden by champion conditional pilot Craig Nichol and trained by Rose Dobbin.
Sandy Thomson kept his good run going when John Williams, his only runner on the card, was a well-backed winner (4/5 from 6/4) for Danny Cook in the racinguk.com/hd Novices’ Handicap Chase.
The Greenlaw trainer said: “He’s had terrible ulcers and he needs this ground. Danny said he was idling and he should stay three miles.”
Rev Up Ruby was another Scottish winner, trained at Bonchester Bridge near Hawick by George Bewley and ridden by his son Jonathon, in the Racing UK HD On Sky 432 Handicap Hurdle.
Six runners face the starter for today’s £17,000 feature, the Racing UK HD Handicap Chase over 2m 4f.
They include course and distance winners Royal Macnab and Quito Du Tresor, trained by Rebecca Menzies and Lucinda Russell respectively.
Royal Macnab can end a frustrating run of seconds. The eight-year-old has been given a break since running well without much reward at Perth in the summer.
Twice a winner at Musselburgh already, the ground is to his liking.
At Chelmsford, Erhaaf might be the answer to the At totepoolracing Win Tickets On Twitter Handicap. The American-bred gelding showed a good attitude when gaining a narrow verdict on his racecourse debut over this course and distance back in March, but has presumably had his problems having made just one competitive appearance since. He returned from four months off in what was quite a warm race at Newmarket in July and shaped with plenty of promise to finish fourth.
The winner, Brorocco, is now rated 85, while the runner-up, Wild Hacked, has struck gold twice since and has a lofty mark of 97.
Owner-breeder Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum clearly felt Erhaaf was not going to live up to expectations and he was moved on in August for just £8,500. He makes his first start for Charlie Fellowes in Essex after switching from Owen Burrows’ yard and if he can be kept sound, he could prove a bargain buy.
Port Isaac can reward those who keep the faith in the concluding Celebrate Christmas At CCR Maiden Stakes.
Marcus Tregoning’s charge was beaten just a head into second on his first two starts and filled the runner-up spot for a third time at Kempton a fortnight ago.
There does not appear to be anything wrong with his attitude and he should be hard to beat in a race that will not take much winning.
Cresswell Breeze can claim a nice prize at Market Rasen when she takes the plunge in the Bud Booth Mares’ Chase.
Trained in Dorset by the capable Anthony Honeyball, the six-year-old is a pretty nice horse and should be up to the job in this Listed affair.
Dusky Legend has to be backed in the Whitley Stud Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at Newbury.
Alan King’s inmate holds the best form in this race, finishing second in the Mares’ Hurdle at Cheltenham.