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Last Updated: 11/12/09 1:03pm
Weird Al - staked RSA Chase claim.
Weird Al posted a strong claim for the RSA Chase at the Festival in March when landing a tight-knit Cheltenham Collection Novices' Chase at foggy Prestbury Park.
The lightly-raced gelding had successfully returned from the injury list at the Paddy Power meeting and, tackling virtually the same distance under Noel Fehily, served it up to his opponents from the front.
In command turning for home, the 11-4 shot kept on powerfully up the final hill to beat Pigeon Island two lengths to the delight of his trainer Ian Williams.
"He's had a year off every time he's run so it was great to get him back just a month after his first win over fences here. He's really matured and grown up," said Williams.
"He's a galloper and a very exciting proposition. The RSA Chase is the target but although we haven't formulated a definite plan I imagine he could well come back here at the end of January.
"Noel was obliged to make plenty of use of him as we knew he would stay and he was chuffed to bits with the horse saying the improvement he showed was very evident.
"It was a big ask when he came here last month but his performances have both been very impressive and I couldn't be happier."
Victor Chandler cut him to 16-1 from 25s for the RSA Chase while Paddy Power go 14s from 25s.