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Third Intention seeks second chase victory

AFTER Cue Card’s Betfair Chase heroics last weekend, Colin Tizzard returns to the race that proved to be the launchpad for a former stable star on Thursday afternoon.

Joe Lively landed his first Graded success in Newbury's Grade 2 RSA Worcester Novices’ Chase in 2007 and went on to land the Feltham Novices’ Chase at Kempton and the race that is now the Argento Chase at Cheltenham.

Third Intention, twice placed behind Betfair Chase runner-up Dynaste last season, attempts to follow suit as he steps back up in trip after finishing third over 2m5f in this grade at Wincanton last time.

“He’s in good nick,” Tizzard said on Wednesday. “He was right up Dynaste’s backside over three miles at Aintree last season so I’m glad we’ve got him back at that trip. Last time he slipped a few times and I think he’s slightly better over a longer trip on a left-handed track. He has won at Newbury so things are in his favour tomorrow.”

Joe Lively would have only been placed six years ago but for the last-fence fall of Nevada Royale, whose trainer Paul Nicholls has won this with Michel Le Bon and Aiteen Thirtythree since, and he expects better from his Just A Par, a beaten favourite on his chasing debut at Chepstow last month.

“He jumped nicely first time but like some of ours he has improved for the run,” Nicholls said. “He was very laid back and relaxed that day, almost too much.

“We’ve revved him up and this has always been his target.”

Richard Newland steps Exeter second Ardkilly Witness up in class and said: “He’s in great order; the question is whether he is up to this grade or not. It’s a fact-finding expedition.

“I was very pleased with his run at Exeter, he’s a super chasing prospect and he should like the track, but it is whether he is good enough.”

Newbury Hurdle good to soft, soft in places; Chase good to soft, good in places
Taunton Good
Uttoxeter Chase soft; Hurdle good to soft, soft in places

Today's key pointers

Since 2008 Tom George is 5/18 in handicap hurdles at Newbury for a profit of £13.83 to £1 stakes. Lordofthehouse runs in the Gerry Feilden at 3.15

Since 2006 Nicky Henderson has a 36 per cent strike-rate with his four-year-olds in bumpers at Newbury (9 winners from 25 runners for a profit of £20.17 to £1 stakes) which improves to 8 winners from 19 runners (strike-rate 43 per cent, +£24.64) when only counting debutants. Maestro Royal looks interesting based on that stat.

Paul Nicholls is 14/31 with his novice hurdlers at Taunton during the months of November and December since 2006, for a profit of £18.82 to £1 stakes. Very Noble runs over 2m 3f 110y at 1.05.

Pointers courtesy of Raceform Interactive

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