Twiston-Davies – More of the same in Betfair Chase
Nigel Twiston-Davies feels Bristol De Mai has few questions to answer as he goes looking for a win at the Betfair Chase at Haydock.
After he failed to back up his incredible triumph in the race at 2017 the gray had been.
However, on a former King George hero in Thistlecrack good ground this past year up contrary to the Gold Cup winner Native River and a subsequent winner of the race in Clan Des Obeaux, Bristol De Mai showed his flexibility when winning by four seasons.
And while he dropped at Christmas in the King George, he then ran a solid race in the Gold Cup when third to Anibale Fly and Al Boum Photo run from Haydock.
“He had been the third-best horse in England and Ireland in Cheltenham and these two Irish horses are not coming so he must win,” said Twiston-Davies.
“Unexpected things can happen. He has just run around there (Haydock) more times than anyplace else. He is a horse that is good and was third. I really don’t think it is anything to do with Haydock. He is a good horse and it is a race. There is nothing to do with year’s time or track it falls.
“It was good ground last year so I do not think that is a issue.
“There is always more pressure when you’re favourite. If you’re underdog it sits a whole lot more pleasant, but we’ve got the supposed best horse on the race and hopefully he shows it.”
Runs Ballyoptic, in a race that he won in 2010 with Imperial Commander.
Ballyoptic finished after last season, yet this term it’s been a different story, having a career-best victory from the Charlie Hall along with a win at Chepstow .
“The actual goal for him will be the Grand National. He had been moving well when he fell in it last year,” explained Twiston-Davies.
“It was very pleasing last moment. He has been a horse that is nice. Last season went wrong as he had a couple drops, however he put that and he will keep improving.
“He’s definitely jumping better this year, but I think he is just growing up and studying.”
The newest kid on the block will be the Lostintranslation, among the best novices of the last year, who is stepping into company for the very first time of Colin Tizzard.
He set pulses racing when winning the Colin Parker but will face a totally different degree of opponent on Merseyside.
Assistant trainer Joe Tizzard explained:”He’s in great nick. I am excited about his next thing.
“He did everything he needed to do at Carlisle which worked out as beautiful prep run for him and now he moves into the maximum league. I am excited about running him.
“Three miles matches him. It had been the right thing to do, go two and a half miles last time.
“His novice type got a major boost with Defi Du Seuil on Sunday and hopefully he can take another step too.
“He definitely looks sharper in the home and he’s lost a bit of his belly. Tighten up and also he was able to triumph. I could not be happier at which we have got him.”
Rated just 1lb below Bristol De Mai is Paul Nicholls’ Ryanair Chase winner Frodon, and also the winner trainer feels Bryony Frost’s bracket was underestimated.
“Frodon includes a lot in his favour. It’s a small field, he’s had a streak which we wanted him to have and at the end of the day that he won a Ryanair and also a Cotswold Chase last season,” said Nicholls.
“He’s a good horse, so I believe he has been underestimated a tiny bit. You have said Lostintranslation would have won even or even a Ryanair year, or a Cotswold Bristol De Mai.
“I think that it’s an intriguing, tight small race. I understand Bristol De Mai is constantly brilliant there and then he’ll be quite hard to conquer if he ends up at the form, but it’s a race.
“I know Lostintranslation was great as a newcomer, but I still think he has it to prove. He won a gentle race another day where he had an easy lead, but he’s in from the big boys therefore it’ll be very interesting to see”