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Snake to slither home
Qaffaal will represent a major breakthrough, confidence-wise, for Nathan Evans if he steers this seven-year-old into the winners’ enclosure after the £15,000 ‘aged’ handicap over a mile of Chelmsford polytrack tonight, eve of the much-vaunted and eagerly awaited Cheltenham Festival which dominates this week.
Exciting times, especially for Nathan, badly injured last year, his first as a ‘full jockey’ following a tremendously successful apprenticeship; he seemed to float through his allowances.
Veteran trainer Mick Easterby was extremely supportive and Evens must have been a ‘cash-stream’ for the remarkable 88-year-old octagenarian who took full advantage of an obvious talent.
On the back of a ‘career-best’ effort over seven furlongs of the extremely stiff Newcastle tapeta track Qaffaal, formerly owned by Hamdan Al Maktoum and a ‘cast-off’ spotted by the Malton maestro, comes into this race clear ‘best-in’ on actual time-figures and, significantly, is a previous course and distance winner.
That recent effort was probably a ‘sighter’ for both Qaffaal, and Nathan.
Pointless trolling through nine rivals this is just about things dropping into place for the Northern raiders and, believe it or not, my fingers will be firmly crossed.
Come-backs are all about determination and courage; how much admiration does the public have, currently, for Roger Federer and Tiger Woods?
Both were out in the wilderness four years ago but now Roger is number one tennis player in the World and Woods was back on top of a leader board Saturday night in an extremely, competitive, golfing tournament in Florida; time yours truly won his eighth ‘major’and I’ll be going all out for it in 2018. Take heed readers!
Firesnake is a long time winning, can we afford to follow this ‘sheep’ over a cliff in division two of an ‘aged’ sprint handicap?
Answer is yes because Firesnake, denied several opportunities due to several bad draws, looks guaranteed to make the frame (again!) and apprentice Gabriel Malune claims 5lbs allowance, reduced from 7lbs last week.
Stone Of Destiny is a ‘penalty-kick’ for a four-runner Novice Stakes over five furlongs, an ‘anchor’ for our daily patent.
Next article will refer to ‘Cheltenham.’
2.45 Qaffaal (e.w)
3.45 Stone Of Destiny (nap)
4.45 Firesnake (e.w)
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