Sky Bet Chase (Formerly The Great Yorkshire Chase) (Listed Handicap) 3m

  • (5yo+, 3m, Class 1, 15 runners)
  • Winner £42,712 2nd £16,028 3rd £8,025 4th £3,998 5th £2,010 6th £1,005
  • Going: Soft
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 6m 23.50s
  • Off time: 15:17:38
Full result
Result 15:15 Doncaster
Pos Horse Distance/th> Odds
1st 10 The Rainbow Hunter 25/1
2nd 15 Baile Anrai 25/1
3rd 1 Unioniste 8 11/4f
  • Last Updated: January 24 2014, 17:03 GMT

View from connections ahead of Saturday's Sky Bet Chase at Doncaster.

Unioniste: Class act in the Sky Bet Chase
Unioniste: Class act in the Sky Bet Chase

Trainer Keith Reveley is hoping last month's course and distance winner Night In Milan can repeat the trick in the Sky Bet Chase at Doncaster on Saturday.

Mart Lane and Baile Anrai, third and fourth respectively that day, are again in opposition, but Reveley reports his horse in fine shape and ready to go to war in this historic three-mile handicap, formerly known as the Great Yorkshire Chase.

"He ran really well at Doncaster last time and went up 8lb. This is a tougher race, but he's in great form and we'll have a go," said the Saltburn trainer.

"He jumped brilliant last time. I'm hoping he jumps as well again, but it is a hot race."

Kruzhlinin takes his chance on the back of two wins in three-mile handicaps at Kelso.

"It's a step up in class and it will be interesting to see where we stand," said trainer Donald McCain.

"I don't know if he's particularly well handicapped from what he's done in the north, but we'll find out where we are."


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Paul Nicholls is bullish about the chances of Unioniste, the top weight and class horse in the race.

The six-year-old is the youngest horse in the line-up but has posted important victories at Cheltenham and Aintree and even took his chance in the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown last month - though he was in the rear behind Bobs Worth.

"Harry Derham takes 5lb off, which will be handy," the Ditcheat handler told Betfair. "He actually rode him when he won the Stewart Family Gold Cup at Cheltenham. We ran him in the Lexus over Christmas and he wasn't beaten too far by the Gold Cup winner (Bobs Worth).

"But I still don't think he performed to his best that day. They didn't go a real good gallop and he sprinted away from the back of the second-last and he stayed on strongly.

"The softer the ground, the better for him, and he's obviously down in class from running in the Lexus. He must have an outstanding chance."

Emma Lavelle relies upon Gullinbursti, having taken out her other entry Court By Surprise, and is hoping the ground will be in his favour.

The eight-year-old has been in good form this season, winning on his reappearance at Market Rasen, then finishing fifth to Gevrey Chambertin over fixed-brush hurdles at Haydock.

He returned to fences for his latest outing, finishing third behind Hadrian's Approach at Newbury.

"Gullinbursti was very good first time out this season and then ran a smashing race at Haydock," said the Andover handler.

"I think the ground wasn't quite right for him last time out at Newbury as he is a better horse on better ground."

Dr Richard Newland was not happy with the 12lb rise handed to Mart Lane for his course and distance success four weeks ago following his placed effort behind Night In Milan, but the application of blinkers worked on that occasion and the trainer is hoping for a repeat dose.

"He's been put up 12lb for winning there. That's quite harsh as he got beaten before by Night In Milan," the Worcester handler told At The Races.

"The blinkers seemed to help him, though, so I'm hoping that improvement will be continued next time.

"You don't know if it will it repeat itself second time but it seemed to make a difference first time, so we'll have to see. He's nine years old, but has not had that much racing."

Baile Anrai was only fourth behind Night In Milan last month, but has had a confidence-boosting win over a shorter trip at Leicester.

Trainer Dan Skelton expects a decent display from the 10-year-old, who has bottom weight.

"He stays very well and I only dropped him back to two miles at Leicester because it had cut up and looked a weak race. He got away with it," he said. "Ideally I'd like the ground to dry up but it looks worth a go as he can run off 10st."

Last year's Grand National hero Auroras Encore continues his build-up to another crack at the Aintree showpiece with a run in this race.

Sue Smith reports the 12-year-old to be ready to run again after his first run of the campaign, when he was fifth behind his stablemate Cloudy Too in the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby on Boxing Day.

"The horse is in very good form going there. It will be a good race and we are hopeful he will run a big race," said the Bingley trainer. "They are giving the ground as good to soft and soft. I think he will cope with that."

Time For Rupert has been a smart performer in his time, but has had more than his share of problems and was returning after a long lay-off when a tailed-off last of four finishers behind Reve De Sivola in the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot last month.

The 10-year-old has come down in the ratings and his trainer Paul Webber wants to see if Time For Rupert retains his ability

"We've had a few little muscle problems at home, so we've been a bit quiet with runners recently, but we think he's ready for action and the handicapper has given him a chance. We'll have to see if he can still do it," said the Banbury handler.

"He was coming back off a 14-month absence after surgery at Ascot and I think he just got leg weary in that desperate ground.

"His better efforts have usually been on spring-time ground. We're hoping the ground will be to his liking at Doncaster."

Andy Turnell feels that this task might be too much for The Druids Nephew, but is happy to let him have a shot at such a good prize.

"He seems fine. James (Banks) got on well with him before so he keeps the ride and takes 5lb off," said the Wiltshire trainer.

"I think this race might just be a bit good for us. He might be punching above his weight, so we'll see what happens. The owners were very keen to go for it."

Native Gallery arrives at Doncaster on the back of a fine effort at Kempton where he was third to Planet Of Sound.

His trainer Ben de Haan is looking for an other creditable display from his nine-year-old, who is near the bottom of the weights.

"He's in great form. It's a competitive race, but we'll give it a go and he won't mind the ground," said De Haan.

"I was very pleased with his run at Kempton the other day. I asked Noel (Fehily) who rode him that day what he thought about throwing him in it and he said I should definitely declare him.

"He's riding Emma's (Lavelle) horse (Gullinbursti) and wouldn't have been able to do the weight for us anyway. We've got Leighton Aspell. Our hope our luck changes as he's not had much luck for me before. He's a good jockey and he's in great form as well."


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