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Richard Hannon

Richard Hannon trains Van Der Neer who is 8-1 for Racing Post Trophy

  PICTURE: Getty Images  

Van Der Neer is a 'really nice horse' - Hannon

RICHARD HANNON will bid to end the season with a bang at Doncaster on Saturday when Van Der Neer lines up in the Racing Post Trophy, and the champion trainer is clearly keen on his chances.

Hannon, who added Saeed Manana's Van Der Neer to the last British Group 1 race of the year at a cost of £17,500, said: "He is a really nice horse. He couldn't have done it any easier at Leicester, and Richard [Hughes] likes him. We supplemented him on Monday, and he is a definite runner."

However, Hannon is unsure whether Havana Gold, winner of the Group 3 Somerville Tattersall Stakes at Newmarket last month, will join his highly regarded stablemate on Town Moor.

The trainer added: "Havana Gold is a good horse, too. I haven't spoken to his owners yet, but there is a chance he could run at Doncaster as well."

The Aidan O'Brien-trained Kingsbarns, another to have been
supplemented at the beginning of this week for the 1m event, was all the rage in the market on Tuesday, and BetVictor make him 2-1 favourite (from 5-2).  The same firm have Van Der Neer at 13-2.

The going at Doncaster remained soft on Tuesday, although a dry forecast for the remainder of the week renders it likely conditions won't be as testing as many might have envisaged.

Roderick Duncan, clerk of the course, said: "The ground is still soft. No rain is forecast for the rest of the week, and overnight
temperatures on Thursday night and Friday night are expected to be just above freezing.

"We have lots of low cloud today, and the chance of fog tomorrow which should clear on Thursday."

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