Tote Win: £17.20 Tote Place: £4.40,1.70
Straight Forecast: £36.86 Exacta: £37.80 Swingers: 1&2:3.90 2&3:1.10 1&3:3.20
Jackpot: £39,700.33 carried forward to Wolverhampton, 15th Nov
Placepot: £90.70, Pool: £205485.45, 1652.48 winning tickets
Quadpot: £18.70, Pool: £14914.11, 587.84 winning tickets
This race looked like a match between seasoned campaigner Forpadydeplasterer and rising star Tataniano but GAUVAIN crashed the party in spectacular style. The gelding was having his first run since leaving Charlie Mann and his first since April 2009 but he had been highly tried in his novice season and wasn't disgraced in finishing sixth (behind Forpadydeplaster) in the Arkle of that year. He travelled and jumped beautifully throughout before being produced to challenge at the second last and found plenty for Daryl Jacob to win comfortably. He was, not surprisingly, given quotes for the Champion Chase after this and that has to be a realistic target providing that he stays sound. Forpadydeplasterer ran his usual game race but once again seemed to lack a change of gear in the closing stages; he was kept wide throughout suggesting that Barry Geraghty may have been looking for better ground and a couple of small mistakes didn't help his cause. Tataniano ran his worst race on testing winter ground at Newbury last season but was very impressive when winning the Maghull Novices' Chase at Aintree on a faster surface. He raced exuberantly in front and jumped well and this was by no means a bad return to action as the first two didn't get away from him once he was passed; Noel Fehily reported that he needed the run and this was confirmed by the trainer, his next outing should reveal whether he's capable of holding his own in Championship races. The remainder were up against it on the figures but Oiseau De Nuit rallied well into fourth having received reminders halfway through the race. Mahogany Blaze made two bad mistakes which took their toll but he should continue to perform creditably although he may be difficult to place from his current mark. Oh Crick has run several sound races at Cheltenham in the past and this has to go down as disappointing although in recent years he has done his winning on better ground and his trainer felt that he may have needed the run quite badly.