Briery back in attempt to be Belle of the Prestbury Park Ball
EBF/Thoroughbred Breeders' Association Mares' Novices Handicap Chase | Listed | 2m4½f | 5yo+ | ITV4/RUK
The RSA Chase turned out to be one of the more extraordinary races at this year's Cheltenham Festival as Might Bite dragged his pursuers through a relentless test of jumping and galloping.
There was no shame in the fact that Briery Belle was unable to keep pace with such a frighteningly-talented novice and, assuming the drop back in trip does not unduly inconvenience her, she appears to set a good standard here.
Antartica De Thaix already has a Listed success to her name having beaten Desert Queen by nine lengths at Huntingdon at the beginning of last month, while her three wins since the turn of the year have all come at this trip.
Plaisir D'Amour has stamina to prove although she was beaten too far out on her only try at this kind of trip at Uttoxeter and has since put in three decent efforts.
Magic Money makes a quick reappearance after edging home by a neck at Haydock on Saturday.
Greatrex in great heart
The last four runners sent out by Warren Greatrex have all won, including Saturday's Haydock heroine Magic Money.
Proper handicap mark a help
Only two of the last ten winners have carried 10 stone or lower to success suggesting that the three who are wrong at the weights might struggle here.
What they say
Paul Nicholls, trainer of Antartica De Thaix
She is obviously getting better and better with experience. She won her last couple well and this is the ideal race for her.
Henry Daly, trainer of Briery Belle
She has been absolutely fine since Cheltenham and hopefully tomorrow will suit her a lot better. Her jumping was fine in the RSA and funnily it was worse the time before on soft ground in the Dipper. She finds really soft ground quite hard work and her long stride suits good ground better. She has basically jumped fine and speed will undo most of them, won’t it?
Warren Greatrex, trainer of Magic Money
A quick reappearance was always a possibility but she needed to win to get in the handicap because she was a little bit wrong. She won well in what was a really good race on Saturday. It’s unfortunate that it wasn’t Listed and we just wanted to get a bit of black type with her if she came out of it OK. She is off a good weight and she is very tough and seems to be fine.
Tom George, trainer of Storming Strumpet
She is wrong at the weights but we have trained her for this, with the idea of trying to get a bit of black type for her. I imagine she will be going to stud pretty soon so that would add to her value. She ran well in this race last year when she was inexperienced and it would be great if she could run into the frame.