Minella and Lovcen stuffed by Difference
Report: Leicester, Tuesday
Leicester Annual Members Novices' Chase (Class 3) 5yo+, 2m7½f
IT IS not a regular occurrence that two Grade 1 winners are beaten on a Tuesday afternoon at little Leicester but Minella Class and Lovcen both suffered that inglorious fate as they were outclassed by Same Difference in a novice chase.
The Alan King-trained Lovcen, winner of the Sefton Novices' Hurdle at Aintree last April, made an indifferent start to his chasing career in the competitive Feltham at Kempton on December 26 but was odds-on favourite to redeem himself among less distinguished company.
Fellow Grade 1 hurdle winner, the Nicky Henderson-trained Minella Class, opened his season with a first win over fences but fell in a Grade 2 at Lingfield before Christmas and suffered an alarming drop off in form around the same time the previous season.
Both delivered lacklustre performances. First Lovcen then Minella Class dropped off the pace as the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Same Difference, the 9-4 second faovurite, and Lucy Wadham's Wiesentraum ambled many lengths clear to take first and second.
Twiston-Davies' business partner Carl Llewellyn did not specify a target for the winner but said: "Sam [Twiston-Davies, jockey] said the better ground helped, and he did jump well. He was consistent last year and as the spring comes I think he might be better again on better ground."