A busy Saturdays racing this weekend sees a top drawer performer return to action in the form of Vautour at Ascot in the Stella Artois 1965 Chase.
A headline act I am sure, and in receipt of weight from the talented Ptit Zig he should win like a 1/3 shot should.
The racing at the Berkshire venue seems to be concentrating on quality and not quantity, mind you that said Haydock hasn't fared much better.. Not even £1 million pound has tempted an Irish raider or the Gold Cup holder to the Betfair Chase and on that basis it looks best left to the Saturday specialist Paul Nicholls and his dual King George winner Silviniaco Conti. ( previewed earlier in the week )
Also at the Lancashire venue the resurgent "aeroplane" Irving lines up again, just one week after his smooth performance at his local track Wincanton.
In his early novice days he looked unbeatable, but since then (Grade 1 victory in the Fighting Fifth aside) he hasn't really gone on as expected.
There have been excuses but there should be none tomorrow and if he can see off the new kid on the block Top Notch, then he will be right back in the picture for all the top table races.
All these Grade One performers but I am interested in a horse that ran behind Silviniaco Conti at Kempton last time out.
Low Key has gone from Ces favourite to 25/1 shot for a hurdle (albeit a competitive Grade 3) in a little under two months. Has he lost his class or ability??.. doubtful being trained by Mr D Pipe.. Has he gone over the top??.. again not likely as he seemed like a horse unexposed and full of potential especially over hurdles and it was his last run which caught the eye.
Settled at the rear of the field he was ridden extremely patiently by Conor O Farrell that day and the commentator even remarked about the ride turning in.
Brother Tedd the impressive winner simply shot away while Low Key was still a fair way off of the pace before staying on well and narrowly losing out in a battle with one Silviniaco Conti for second. He has been left on the same mark for this and with the claim of one of the finds of the early season Mr David Noonan he finds himself running off of 7lb lower.