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Peter Scudamore's 'partner in crime' ready for new challenge in Classic Chase

Corach Rambler: progressive novice is a 5-1 chance for Saturday's Classic Chase
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Connections of Corach Rambler have opted to step out of novice company and take on seasoned handicappers in the feature Agetur UK Ltd Classic Handicap Chase (3.00) at Warwick on Saturday. 

Trainer Lucinda Russell was keen to avoid old foe Threeunderthrufive in the Grade 2 novice chase on the card and that swayed her towards running Corach Rambler in open company for the first time.

The 5-1 chance is open to improvement after winning at Aintree and Cheltenham this season and the trainer said: "We didn't make a decision until five minutes before the deadline, we'd been thinking about it for a long time. Threeunderthrufive beat us in a novice hurdle at Musselburgh and we were worried he'd beat us again.

"We looked at the handicap and thought it's such a good prize, he's won two, so why not go for another? Although he's got top weight [11st 12lb] he deserves to be there and if he can improve a bit for the step up in trip it will open more doors."

Classic Chase card and betting

Russell's partner and former champion jockey Peter Scudamore rides Corach Rambler every day, and she joked the eight-year-old was accustomed to carrying a heavy weight.

"He's a good 16.3 hands," she said. "Scu rides him every day and he says he has a heavy saddle, so he'd be carrying close to that every day anyway! Scu's a bit of a liability at home because he keeps going off and doing his own thing and Corach is his partner in crime."

Corach Rambler charted a somewhat wayward path up the Cheltenham hill to victory last month but Russell isn't concerned about Warwick's tight turns and quick stretch of fences.

Corach Rambler is welcomed back to the winner's enclosure at Cheltenham in December

"I don't mind people calling him quirky because he's got his own ideas about things, a bit like Scu," she said. "He did idle in front and hang at Cheltenham but I don't care, they can do that all they want if they win races. I think he'll enjoy the track, it will keep his interest. I love Warwick, it's a good jumping track."

Purchased for just £17,000 at the same sale as Russell's Grade 1-winning star Ahoy Senor, Corach Rambler bids to become the yard's second Classic Chase winner after One For Arthur in 2017.

While One For Arthur's win set him up for Grand National glory three months later, the Aintree showpiece isn't yet on the agenda for Russell's latest staying prospect. 

She said: "Scu loved him straight away. I was all for Ahoy Senor and I only had eyes for him. Scu said 'come and look' and in a little stable down the back there was a slightly apologetic-looking horse. Scu really wanted him, so we bought him as well.

"He won't be going for the National this year. I'd love to take him to Cheltenham again, whether that's for a handicap or novice, and then we could look at the Scottish National meeting."

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Scu said 'come and look' and in a little stable down the back there was a slightly apologetic-looking horse
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