TRAINER Lucinda Russell is confident her stable star Bold Sir Brian can prove just as effective over three miles as he has done over shorter trips.
The six-year-old, who won well at Carlisle in November, makes the long journey down to Sandown today for the Sportingbet Future Stars Chase, where he will face three promising rivals. The likes of Impek, Star De Mohaison and Barbers Shop have used this race as a stepping stone to bigger things in the past. And Russell is hopeful Bold Sir Brian can continue his progression.
“Everything has gone perfect with him since his win at Carlisle. This has been the plan ever since,” said the Milnathort handler. “It’s a small field, which he seems to enjoy, and a race over Sandown’s fences should be a good education for him. I’d like to think he would be as effective over three miles as he has been over shorter trips – he’s got all the tools.
“He jumped ever so well at Carlisle, he really warned to his task. I was really pleased with him that day and he seems a totally different horse this year. He was quite precocious – he always seemed to be one year ahead of where we thought he’d be.”
Paul Nicholls expects Pacha Du Polder to fare much better over a longer trip at Sandown after he was pulled up in the two-and-a-half-mile Old Roan Chase at Aintree in October. “The ground was too quick for him at Aintree and he’ll be much better over three miles,” said the champion trainer. The Nicky Henderson-trained Triolo D’Alene and Henry Daly’s Grove Pride complete the four-runner field.
At Wincanton yesterday, Nicholls’ rider Daryl Jacob was handed a ten-day ban by the stewards for failing to ride out to the line on Ulis De Vassy in the Handicap Hurdle.
Jacob is set to miss the lucrative Christmas period, where he could have expected to be riding plenty of top-class horses for Nicholls, who employs him as second jockey to Ruby Walsh.
The dates of his suspension mean that he will sit out 20-22 December, 26-31 December and 1 January.
Jacob was in line for the mount on Kauto Stone in the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day after partnering him to victory at Down Royal last month. He will also miss Chepstow’s Welsh National meeting.
Jacob was in front over the last flight on the Nick Williams-trained Ulis De Vassy but was headed inside the last 100 yards by Quaddick Lake. It appeared that Jacob mistook a path, several strides before the line, as the winning post, before realising his error and riding out for a couple of strides more. The stewards punished him under Rule (B)59.4 as they believed he still could have won. The official winning margin was a neck.