We look to Ascot for pre-Christmas celebrations

 In Latest News

December 21

Two big days at Ascot coming up as we seek to find out whether Santa has left us some early Christmas presents in his sack, with The Glancing Queen the highlight today in the closing Listed bumper.

Alan said:”It was a very pleasant surprise when she made a winning start for us in similar grade for fillies and mares at Cheltenham last month.

“All credit to part-owner Charles Dingwall for encouraging me to go for it when I had deliberated whether we should go to Exeter instead.

“But The Glancing Queen looked a very exciting prospect and she will have learned from that debut, so, while she now takes on the boys, I’ve been happy with her since and am looking forward to the challenge.

As you would expect for the money, the £150,000 Betfair Exchange Handicap Hurdle at Ascot tomorrow is very competitive, but we have three live chances.

Assessing their merits, Alan added:””This has been the target for Fidux since he won here last month. He has improved significantly since we changed his training routine – we now keep him fresh rather than giving him plenty of work – and, though he is now 10lb higher, he seems in good order.

“Even though Lisp was just beaten in the Gerry Feilden at Newbury, I was delighted with his run as it came less than a fortnight after Fontwell and he settled better than he had done when winning the Salmon Spray there.

“The one worry with Lisp is that he’s a better horse going left-handed, but he might get away with it at Ascot as you can finish up the stands side there.

“Our other runner is Chatez, who made a pleasing return over hurdles when second there last month, despite pulling very hard early on and been lucky not to be brought down. He remains in good form at home.

Valdez has his second run back there. His problems have been well documented, but he ran well for a long way over the course last month, and, besides coming on for that race, he could well be suited by stepping up in trip.

“We had to take Full Glass out of Cheltenham last week-end when the rain didn’t arrive in time, but he’ll now get the soft ground he loves and he, too, might appreciate going up in distance for the Silver Cup.

“He’s been treating fences with more respect at home since he came to grief at Haydock, and he schooled well on Monday.

“And another who could be suited by going up in trip is Fields of Fortune in the novices’ handicap hurdle, though I still fear that he is too high in the handicap.”

Don’t forget we also have two of our classier Flat horses running at Lingfield’s valuable polytrack meeting tomorrow in Scarlet Dragon and Redicean.

Alan said:”Scarlet Dragon just got nailed in a Listed race there last time, and, though we all have it to do at the ratings against Cambridgeshire winner Wissahickon in the Listed Quebec Stakes, the valuable Easter Classic back at Lingfield on Good Friday is his big target, so we have put a return to jumping on hold for the time being.”

“Redicean pleased me with his win at Wolverhampton and he will also stay on the Flat for now at least, and, though 4lb higher than he was at Dunstall Park, he, too, goes there in good form.”