Hinterland (13/2) burst some big reputations when winning the Racing Post Henry VIII Novices' Chase at Sandown.
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Second in this Grade One contest 12 months ago, Paul Nicholls had revealed that his five year old was a much stronger horse this season following his reappearance victory over course and distance; a race in which Grandouet had unseated on his chase debut.
Claret Cloak and Balder Succes cut out a furious gallop in this two mile contest and it was no surprise when their early exertions took their toll after the Pond Fence but the more patiently ridden Hinterland and Grandouet moved smoothly through towards the head of affairs.
They were tracked by the well backed favourite Taquin Du Seuil but he had done well just to be within hailing distance having nibbled the turf after a bad mistake at the second of the Railway Fences.
He did stay on well under a Tony McCoy drive but he never looked like getting to the front pair with Hinterland running on strongly to deny Grandouet by a neck and complete a double on the card for Nicholls and Daryl Jacob.
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Nicholls said: "He's got loads of speed and I think he wants hanging on to as long as possible. I'm starting to work him out now, he's come on a huge amount for his last run, but he's best going fresh.
"The Arkle is tailor-made for him and I won't be in a huge rush to do a lot with him now."
Jacob said: "He's a lovely horse and we've always thought a lot of him at home. There were no prisoners out there, we went a ferocious gallop early doors, I was nearly struggling to lay up with them at one stage but fair play to him - he dug deep and after the second-last I got a lovely run up through and pinged the last."
Sky Bet cut the winner to 14/1 (from 25s) for the Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy at the Cheltenham Festival.