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Doncaster

  • 12:55 Racing Post Lightning Novices' Chase 2m 110y

  • (Grade 2) £30,500 added 5yo+ 5 ran
  • Winner £17,370 2nd £6,518 3rd £3,264 4th £1,626
  • Going: Good to Soft, Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 4m 8.40s
  • Off time: 12:55:27

View from connections: Racing Post Lightning Novices' Chase

Last Updated: 25/01/14 12:38pm

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Rock On Ruby: Ground will be key

Rock On Ruby: Ground will be key

Connections of Rock On Ruby will check on the state of the ground at Doncaster before making a final decision on whether to run the 2012 Champion Hurdle hero in the Racing Post Lightning Novices' Chase on Saturday.

Trainer Harry Fry wants to get some more valuable racecourse jumping experience into the nine-year-old, hopefully ahead of a bid at the Racing Post Arkle Trophy at Cheltenham in March.

Rock On Ruby made a successful debut over fences at Plumpton in mid-December, but has missed a couple of possible engagements since then because the going has been too soft.

Fry said: "It doesn't need to get any softer than what it is. They are forecast some rain tonight, but that seems to be getting less and less by the hour. We'll discuss it with Noel (Fehily, jockey) and the team.

"He's all ready to go. His schooling's been good, he's been doing lots of that at home. He's all set. This has been the plan and we are keen to run, there's just that question mark about the ground.

"We've got other options in a fortnight if we don't go. He's well and we're looking forward to seeing him out over fences again."

Alan King also has Cheltenham Festival aspirations for Valdez, who has won both his starts over fences in promising fashion.

"This race should determine whether we should be looking at the Arkle at Cheltenham or the Grand Annual," the Barbury Castle trainer told his website.

"I don't know what he beat at Newbury, but he was visually impressive and I have been very pleased with him since."

Irish raider Arnaud takes his chance rather than stay on home soil for the Frank Ward Solicitors Arkle Chase at Leopardstown on Sunday.

His trainer Charles Byrnes believes that is the right decision as conditions on Town Moor are likely to suit the six-year-old, winner of two chases and a hurdle race on his last three starts.

"I believe the ground isn't too bad at Doncaster, so that will be in his favour," said Byrnes.

"He's in good form and I think he'll run well, but it's a hot race and he has it all to do with most of the field. It is a big step up for him, but there is nowhere else to go.

"If he didn't run here he would have had to go for the Arkle in Leopardstown. The race in Doncaster is hot, but I would say the race in Leopardstown is even hotter."

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