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Kempton Park

  • 14:40 Betbright Mobile Pendil Novices' Chase 2m 4f 110y

  • (Grade 2) £30,500 added 5yo+ 6 ran
  • Winner £17,370 2nd £6,518 3rd £3,264 4th £1,626
  • Going: Soft (Heavy on bend adjacent to lake)
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 5m 12.43s
  • Off time: 14:40:19

Fox Appeal on prowl for Pendil riches

Last Updated: 21/02/14 1:14pm

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Fox Appeal: Pendil hopeful

Fox Appeal: Pendil hopeful

Trainer Emma Lavelle has long had the BetBright Mobile Pendil Novices' Chase on her radar for Fox Appeal and hopes the plan comes to fruition at Kempton on Saturday.

The seven-year-old was decent over timber, finishing third behind Big Buck's in the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury in December 2012, and has already made a good impression over fences.

His form with the Paul Nicholls duo of Black Thunder and Wonderful Charm reads well and he also thrashed the useful Raya Star by 10 lengths in a Grade Two at Ascot before finding two miles too sharp behind Arkle fancy Valdez at Doncaster.

"I think this is his race, it's very competitive but it should be," said Lavelle.

"He likes Kempton and the only negative is that he could do with better ground.

"What I've said all along is that he is a two-and-a-half-mile horse and that we'd skip the Arkle by going for this and then Aintree - I hope I'm proved right.

"At Doncaster they just ran him off his feet, he nearly fell at the first and was chasing them all the way, but he galloped all the way to the line and I wasn't disappointed in any way.

"What it proved was that he wasn't quick enough for two miles to travel at that pace so we're hoping this will suit him."

Balder Succes, impressive at Warwick last time, would have been four from five over fences, but for a late fall at Cheltenham in October.

His one disappointing run came at Sandown in December when trainer Alan King's horses were all wrong.

He is another who has Aintree on his radar.

"Balder Succes is likely to skip Cheltenham to wait for Aintree, but he runs in the Pendil Novices' Chase," the Barbury Castle handler told www.alankingracing.co.uk

"He jumped super at Warwick last time and came out of that race very well."

Nicholls runs Dark Lover, who benefited from Balder Succes' fall at Cheltenham but disappointed in handicap company last time out.

On ratings at least he has a bit to find, but it may be significant that Nicholls has chosen to run him in a race he has won an incredible seven times in the last eight years.

Trainer Charlie Longsdon accepts course specialist Loose Chips may be out of his depth, but feels it is worth a crack.

"This is his Gold Cup as he will not go to Cheltenham. On ratings he should not be winning the race, but he does love Kempton and is three from four there," he told his website, www.charlielongsdonracing.com.

Tom George's God's Own was not that far behind Fox Appeal at Doncaster but remains a maiden over fences.

"He ran well at Doncaster last time and we're slightly in no man's land with him, to be honest," said George.

"He wants better ground, ideally, but we don't want to lose his novice status for next season by winning a £2,000 race, which is why we're running him in better races.

"He needs to go right-handed and won at Kempton over hurdles, so we'll let him take his chance and see how he gets on."

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