• Racing/
  • Longsdon Double Handed For Mandarin Repeat

Betfred Mandarin Handicap Chase 3m 2f 110y

  • (4yo+, 3m 2f 110y, Class 3, 8 runners)
  • Winner £7,148 2nd £2,099 3rd £1,049 4th £525
  • Going: Heavy
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 7m 24.80s
  • Off time: 14:10:31
Full result
Result 14:10 Newbury
Pos Horse Distance/th> Odds
1st 4 Pete The Feat 15/8f
2nd 7 Relax 5 10/1
3rd 8 Rey Nacarado 39 5/2
  • Last Updated: December 28 2012, 16:29 GMT

Last year's winner Rey Nacarado forms one half of a strong Charlie Longsdon challenge for Saturday's Betfred Mandarin Handicap Chase at Newbury.

Rey Nacarado: Represents Charlie Longsdon
Rey Nacarado: Represents Charlie Longsdon

Once a more prestigious race than it is today, and run over the course and distance of the Hennessy, this extended three and a quarter-mile event is staged in memory of the remarkable winner of the 1962 Grand Steeplechase de Paris.

Longsdon's principal runner, though, could be Pete The Feat, the choice of regular stable jockey Noel Fehily, who is four from four over fences at smaller venues already this season.

Tony McCoy has been snapped up for the spare on Rey Nacarado, who was fourth to Ballyoliver at the course on December 1.

"In an ideal world I wouldn't be running the two in the same race, but unfortunately it's not an ideal world," said Longsdon.

"Pete The Feat has done nothing wrong, he's flying up the handicap and is on a real roll.

"This is a big step up in class, but his confidence is sky high and it will be interesting to see how he gets on.

"Rey has been dropping down the handicap and is now only 1lb higher than when winning the race last year.

"He didn't run at all badly over course and distance last time, and with McCoy up, he could go well. Both should be fine on the (heavy) ground."

An obvious contender for the red-hot Nicky Henderson yard will be Michael Buckley's State Benefit, who scraped home at Sandown recently on his return from a summer break.

Kim Bailey is not desperately optimistic about Midnight Haze, who was sixth in Cheltenham's cross country race and ran in the Grand National last term but has not sparkled at either of those venues this time around.

The trainer said: "He won't mind the ground but he's at the top end of the handicap and has lost his form a bit and been disappointing, so he needs to improve to be in the frame."

Charlie Mann is in something of a dilemma over where to run Maringo Bay, who has several entries.

Although without a win since thrashing Teaforthree over hurdles at Ffos Las in February 2011, he has run some respectable races behind the likes of Alfie Spinner and Invictus and was not disgraced when second to Mountainous at Chepstow last time.

"His first preference is The Last Fling Chase at Haydock on Sunday, but they are not inspecting until 2pm on Saturday, and the Newbury race is at 2.10pm, so it's a bit difficult," said Mann.

"I will probably have to make a decision in the morning about where to go.

"He's in good form and will love the ground. He is still a novice, but that's probably due to bad placing as he has come up against some decent horses."

Philip Hobbs' Imperial Circus is wrong at the weights with Maringo Bay for finishing behind him at Chepstow.

Nick Williams' runner Blackstaff has made jumping errors of late while Relax and Mark The Book complete the line-up.

Relax, who is trained by Venetia Williams, is the mount of Aidan Coleman.

The jockey told his Racing UK column: "He ran very well for a long time in an amateurs' race at Sandown, but did not finish well so the trip could be a question mark on this ground.

"He is very consistent though and should be there or thereabouts."

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