Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase (Grade 1) 2m
- (5yo+, 2m, Class 1, 7 runners)
- Winner £85,425 2nd £32,055 3rd £16,050 4th £7,995 5th £4,020 6th £2,010
- Going: Soft (Good to Soft in places; Cross Country: Soft)
- Surface: Turf
- Winning time: 4m 1.06s
- Off time: 14:40:48
|2nd||2 Baily Green||2¼||33/1|
Arvika Ligeonniere (FR) 45
|8||161 11-7||W P Mullins||R Walsh||155||15/2|
Baily Green (IRE) 76
|7||161 11-7 t||M F Morris||D J Casey||147||33/1|
His Excellency (IRE) 31
|5||161 11-7 b1||D Pipe||T Scudamore||151||80/1|
Majala (FR) 31
|7||161 11-7 t||T R George||P J Brennan||152||33/1|
Overturn (IRE) 37
|9||161 11-7||D McCain Jnr||J M Maguire||165||7/2|
|7||161 11-7||N J Henderson||B J Geraghty||160||8/15f|
Tap Night (USA) 28
|6||161 11-7||Miss Lucinda V Russell||A P McCoy||145||25/1|
Sprinter Sacre (FR)
||6||11-7||N J Henderson||B J Geraghty||8/11|
There are seven runners facing the starter in this but it will be a surprise if one of the first two in the betting doesn't come out on top. Overturn must be a pleasure to own and train having won a Northumberland Plate and a Chester Cup on the Flat and a Fighting Fifth over hurdles. A brave second in last year's Champion Hurdle, he's won all three starts over fences this season by an average of more than 20 lengths and will undoubtedly try and make all again here. His slick jumping will have most of these in trouble but we fancy SIMONSIG to gallop past the nine-year-old up the hill. Nicky Henderson believes the grey to be something special and he reportedly produced a sparkling piece of work last week in his final preparation. A winner over hurdles over a longer trip here last year, he will relish conditions and though his form over fences so far isn't as strong as that of Overturn he can extend his winning run. The others will probably be playing for places barring accidents and Arvika Ligeonniere may come out best of those if a fall at Leopardstown hasn't affected his confidence. He's already won twice at this level. Majala beat His Excellency in a Grade 2 at Warwick last month but this is another big step up the ladder.
Simonsig 1-6fav (11-8) Made all, mostly always well clear, jumped left 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th, very easily, won at Kempton 2m nov chs Grade 2 (1) hvy in Dec beating Hinterland (10-11) by 35l, 5 ran.
Baily Green (IRE) 14-1 (11-12) Raced in moderate 2nd, closer 3rd and stayed on under pressure from last, 3rd of 5, 3l behind Arvika Ligeonniere (11-12) at Leopardstown 2m 1f nov chs Grade 1 (4yo+) (1) sft in Dec.
His Excellency (IRE) 8-1 (11-5) In rear, outpaced and detached 6th, about 20 lengths last before 2 out, stayed on to take 3rd before last, ran on towards finish, just held, 2nd of 5, 3/4l behind Majala (11-7) at Warwick 2m nov chs G2 (1) hvy in Feb.
Overturn (IRE) 1-5fav (11-8) Jumped well, made all, clear after 8th, unchallenged, won at Musselburgh 2m nov chs (3) gs in Feb beating Tetlami (11-8) by 29l, 4 ran.
Tap Night (USA) 11-8fav (11-7) Tracked leaders, went 2nd from 4th, blundered 13th, smooth headway on bit from
Majala (FR) 2-1 (11-7) Led, ridden and pressed when left clear 2 out, hit last, hard ridden run-in, held on grimly, won at Warwick 2m nov chs G2 (1) hvy in Feb beating His Excellency (11-5) by 3/4l, 5 ran.
Arvika Ligeonniere (FR) 8-13fav (11-12) Led until fell 4 out, in a race won by Benefficient (11-12) at Leopardstown 2m 1f nov chs G1 (1) hvy in Jan, 3 ran.