51 entries received for the Roodee's historic contest
A total of 51 entries, headed by joint top-weights Dusky Warbler and Romany Prince on 9st 10lb, have been received for the £120,000 totesport Chester Cup, which is run on the first day of Chester's May Festival, Wednesday, May 4. This is an increase of 10 on the 2004 entry.
Among the possibles for this year's running of the famous handicap over an extended two and a quarter miles is the Michael Jarvis-trained Anak Pekan (9st 6lb), who was successful last year by five lengths from Misternando. The sponsors make Anak Pekan the 8/1 second favourite to do the double.
Others to have taken part in 2004 and entered again are Big Moment (9st 2lb and 12/1), who finished third, Distant Prospect (8st 10lb and 25/1), fourth, Mana D'Argent (8st and 25/1), fifth, Kristensen (7st 8lb and 33/1), ninth, and Archduke Ferdinand (8st 2lb and 25/1), 13th.
Later in the 2004 campaign Big Moment was victorious for trainer Amanda Perrett in a Listed event at Doncaster by five lengths from Foreign Affairs, while Mana D'Argent went on to win the Brown Jack Handicap at Ascot.
Gary Moore concentrates on jump horses and Dusky Warbler (16/1) did not let him down this winter when winning two novice hurdles. Last year on the Flat, when trained by Michael Bell, Dusky Warbler found Risk Seeker just too powerful in the Group Three Sagaro Stakes at Ascot in April.
The Brighton-based trainer said today: "The totesport Chester Cup could be the target for Dusky Warbler - he won't be having too many runs on the Flat this season. Chester might be his only outing this part of the season and then he might come back for the totesport Cesarewitch later on.
"He's very classy on the Flat and had some good form last year, but his long-term future is over jumps."
The other potential joint top-weight, Romany Prince (25/1), trained by Steve Gollings, is another one fit from hurdling. He did not win on the level while with David Elsworth in 2004, but was placed a number of times, including when third to Corrib Eclipse in the Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot.
An intriguing entry is Coconut Beach (8st 5lb and 14/1) from Ireland's champion trainer Aidan O'Brien. The four-year-old Sadler's Wells colt is lightly raced, winning two small races on the Emerald Isle last term and going down by just over four lengths to Icklingham in the Peter Bryne Kildare Race at the Curragh earlier this month on his seasonal debut.
The totesport ante-post favourite is Swift Sailor (8st 3lb and 7/1), one of three entries from Yorkshire-based trainer, Mark Johnston who also has Contact Dancer (8st 5lb and 9/1) and Mana D'Argent (25/1). Swift Sailor is another lightly-raced sort, winning on two of his three starts including in a Musselburgh Handicap on his reappearance on March 27.
James Fanshawe has a pair of entries in the form of Cruzspiel (9st 8lb and 16/1) and Prins Willem (7st 13lb and 14/1). The former won a Listed race last season for former trainer John Oxx and the shrewd Irish handler considered him good enough to take part in the top-class Irish Field St Leger on his last outing, when ninth to Vinnie Roe, while Prins Willem has been knocking on the door, being placed three times in 12-furlong events at Newmarket last year and recently winning over hurdles at Cheltenham.
Lochbuie (9st 2lb and 12/1), Larkwing (8st 1lb and 16/1) and Jack Of Trumps (7st 11lb and 25/1) could represent Newmarket trainer Geoff Wragg. Lochbuie has already demonstrated a love of Chester, justifying favouritism by half a length from Asiatic in the Victor Chandler Handicap at the Festival last year, Larkwing won a Newmarket maiden in 2004 before a couple of placed efforts in handicaps, while the last-named won four times last season including three on the bounce in July and August and he has already won another on the all-weather at Lingfield in 2005.
Champion jump trainer Martin Pipe does very well in long distance handicaps and he has more entries than any other handler this year - Calamintha (7st 11lb and 20/1), Copeland (8st 2lb and 16/1), Sindapour (7st 11lb and 16/1) and Tell The Trees (5st 11lb and 66/1).
Richard Thomas, chief executive of Chester Racecourse, commented: "The totesport Chester Cup starts the Chester May Festival in tremendous style and I am delighted at the great entry of 51."
Damian Walker, totesport's PR Manager, added: "The totesport Chester Cup is guaranteed to be a competitive betting heat as ever and Anak Pekan, last year's winner, should be popular again."
See below for the full betting.
For more information, please contact Melissa Hatton, Marketing Manager, on 01244 304641.
THE totesport CHESTER CUP
Class 2, Heritage Handicap, £120,000 Total Prize Fund. Chester, 2.30pm, Wednesday, May 4, 2005, 2m 2f 147yds. For 4yo+. Lowest weight 7st 12lb; highest weight not less than 9st 10lb. Entries closed April 13, entries & weights revealed April 20 (51 entries), five-day confirmation stage April 29, final declaration stage 10.00am, May 2. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Tuesday, April 19.
Form Horse Ag/Wt Owner Trainer
5/22005- DUSKY WARBLER 6-9-10 Mike Charlton And Rodger Sargent Gary Moore
332550- ROMANY PRINCE 6-9-10 J B Webb Steve Gollings
316/300- CRUZSPIEL 5-9-08 Pat Garvey James Fanshawe
113000- ANAK PEKAN 5-9-06 HRH Sultan Ahmad Shah Michael Jarvis
356221- BIG MOMENT 7-9-02 R Doel, A Black, Dr J Howells, R & P Scott Amanda Perrett
31443-3 LOCHBUIE (IRE) 4-9-02 Mollers Racing Geoff Wragg
05/1440/- UNLEASH (USA) 6-9-01 Patricia Thompson Philip Hobbs
23025-4 GRAMPIAN 6-9-01 Mike Dawson James Given
(1)(3)(1)(2)(4)1 COLD TURKEY 5-8-13 A Grinter Gary Moore
011010- DOROTHY'S FRIEND 5-8-13 Mountgrange Stud Roger Charlton
113210- TUNGSTEN STRIKE (USA) 4-8-12 John Connolly Amanda Perrett
35010/6/- TEES COMPONENTS 10-8-12 Tees Components Ltd Keith Reveley
2011//65- TOTAL TURTLE (IRE) 6-8-12 W J Smith and M D Dudley Paul Cole
00302-0 DISTANT PROSPECT (IRE) 8-8-10 The Rae Smiths and Pauline Gale Andrew Balding
260024- PAGAN DANCE (IRE) 6-8-10 The Gap Partnership Amanda Perrett
511- BALYAN (IRE) 4-8-05 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
56/6413- CONTACT DANCER (IRE) 6-8-05 Michael Watt Mark Johnston
11-5 COCONUT BEACH 4-8-05 Michael Tabor & Sue Magnier Aidan O'Brien IRE
41365-(1) LAND 'N STARS 5-8-04 Paul Blows Jamie Poulton
31-1 SWIFT SAILOR 4-8-03 Maktoum Al Maktoum Mark Johnston
32111-4 FLAMBOYANT LAD 4-8-03 Maktoum Al Maktoum Barry Hills
61042-1 DR SHARP (IRE) 5-8-03 The Ivy Syndicate Tom Tate
5/02000/- SENTINEL 6-8-02 Five Horses Ltd Peter Chapple-Hyam
261020- TIYOUN (IRE) 7-8-02 Miss Sharon Long Jedd O'Keeffe
400/020- ARCHDUKE FERDINAND (FR)7-8-02 Chris Wright & Catherine Corbett Paul Cole
160(4)/10- KING REVO (IRE) 5-8-02 Dick Renwick & Mrs C Barclay Patrick Haslam
42//00///- COPELAND 10-8-02 Professor David & Heather Silk Martin Pipe
33121-4 RACE THE ACE 4-8-01 I H Stewart-Brown & M J Meacock John Dunlop
125S0-3 LARKWING (IRE) 4-8-01 Mollers Racing Geoff Wragg
05(0)-(0)30 MANA D'ARGENT (IRE) 8-8-00 Francis Mahon Mark Johnston
021400- LE TISS (IRE) 4-8-00 P Trant Mick Channon
345003- PRINS WILLEM (IRE) 6-7-13 Chris van Hoorn James Fanshawe
5/002//-(0)1 FAR PAVILIONS 6-7-13 David Abell Alan Swinbank
0513-(0)5 HIGH POINT (IRE) 7-7-12 The Aedean Partnership Gerry Enright
014101- STOOP TO CONQUER 5-7-12 Seasons Holidays Tony Carroll
(1)(1)(4)-(0)(1)(2) GARDEN SOCIETY (IRE) 8-7-12 Roy Marks Pat Gilligan
301120/- SINDAPOUR (IRE) 7-7-11 Mary Burke Martin Pipe
26135-1 CALAMINTHA 5-7-11 David Jenks Martin Pipe
41110-(1) JACK OF TRUMPS (IRE) 5-7-11 Mollers Racing Geoff Wragg
514020- VALANCE (IRE) 5-7-10 M Haynes, A & J Allison, Johnny Weatherby Charles Egerton
5(2)(1)-(1)(1)4 SERBELLONI 5-7-10 Karyl Harris Walter Swinburn
03(4)(1)-(5)3 KRISTENSEN 6-7-08 Equiname Ltd Karen McLintock
121530- MALARKEY 8-7-07 A Liddiard Stef Liddiard
0000-(2)5 THEATRE (USA) 6-7-05 Chris Steward Jamie Poulton
515-(1)21 NOUNOU 4-7-05 Anita Farrell Declan Daly
01(1)(1)0-(0) MITH HILL 4-7-04 Mohammed Jaber Ed Dunlop
21400-6 MASTER WELLS (IRE) 4-7-04 Jordan Ellison Lund James Bethell
412111- INCHPAST 4-7-04 Marcoe Racing Welwyn Mark Tompkins
0160-00 DUNE RAIDER (USA) 4-7-03 Tariq Al Nisf Kevin Ryan
(3)(1)(3)-(2)12 GREENWICH MEANTIME 5-6-11 SP Racing Investments S A Lynda Ramsden
00/0551- TELL THE TREES 4-5-11 Stuart Mercer Martin Pipe
BREAKDOWN OF TRAINER'S ENTRIES IN TOTESPORT CHESTER CUP TOGETHER WITH PAST VICTORIES
Tell The Trees
Amanda Perrett (2000 Bangalore)
Jack Of Trumps
Paul Cole (1996 Merit)
Land N Stars
Stoop To Conquer
John Dunlop (2002 Fantasy Hill)
Race The Ace
Barry Hills (1980 Arapahos, 1999 and 2001 Rainbow High)
Michael Jarvis (2004 Anak Pekan)
Aidan O'Brien IRE
Lynda Ramsden (1990 Travelling Light, 1995 and 1997 Top Cees)
totesport opening odds
7 SWIFT SAILOR
8 ANAK PEKAN
9 CONTACT DANCER
12 BIG MOMENT
12 COLD TURKEY
12 DOROTHY'S FRIEND
12 DR SHARP
12 FLAMBOYANT LAD
12 TUNGSTEN STRIKE
14 COCONUT BEACH
14 LAND N STARS
14 PRINS WILLEM
14 RACE THE ACE
16 FAR PAVILIONS
16 DUSKY WARBLER
20 HIGH POINT
20 KING REVO
20 PAGAN DANCE
25 ARCHDUKE FERDINAND
25 DISTANT PROSPECT
25 JACK OF TRUMPS
25 MANA D'ARGENT
25 ROMANY PRINCE
25 STOOP TO CONQUER
25 TEES COMPONENTS
25 TOTAL TURTLE
33 GARDEN SOCIETY
33 LE TISS
33 MASTER WELLS
33 MITH HILL
40 GREENWICH MEANTIME
66 DUNE RAIDER
66 TELL THE TREES
JOES EDGE SET TO MEET IRISH NATIONAL HERO AT PUNCHESTOWN
Trainer Ferdy Murphy today revealed that he is likely to run Saturday's Gala Casinos Daily Record Scottish Grand National winner Joes Edge in what is shaping up to be a brilliant renewal of the EUR100,000 betfair.com Novice Handicap Chase at Punchestown's Irish National Hunt Festival next Friday, April 29.
An intriguing clash is on the cards in the 3m 1f event at Punchestown between Joes Edge, who held on to beat Cornish Rebel in a photo at Ayr, and the Powers Gold Label Irish Grand National hero Numbersixvalverde.
Ferdy Murphy said today: "We gave Joes Edge a canter yesterday and a couple of canters this morning and we are giving the betfair.com Novice Handicap Chase serious thought. We hadn't actually considered it until Janet Williamson from Punchestown phoned and told us all the pros and cons about going and she's made a lot of valid points. I've spoken to the owner and he's leaving the decision up to me.
"The girl who rides him all the time, Mindy, says he's in fantastic order so we'll sit down and probably make a final decision on Friday. If he runs, Keith Mercer will ride again.
"He showed the other day at Ayr that staying wouldn't be a problem and at Liverpool, he proved that two and a half miles is alright. He also had two very good runs over two miles and five furlongs at Cheltenham."
Meanwhile Co Kildare handler Martin Brassil confirmed that Numbersixvalverde is on course for the race. He said today: "We hope to run Numbersixvalverde in the betfair.com Novice Handicap Chase. He seems to be very well after Fairyhouse and that race doesn't seem to have taken a lot out of him, visibly anyway, but you never really know.
"Often horses go out in a field and then when they come back they don't run as well as before - so while he's fit and well and while the ground is soft, we might as well keep going with him. He would learn nothing new at home, but he might learn something new on the racecourse.
"I am very happy with him and looking forward to running him if the ground remains soft - he won't run if it gets any harder.
"He's gone up 28lb in the weights and this will be a big test for him and a fairly new experience as his three wins in handicaps so far have been mainly against second or third season chasers - now he's going to be taking on the best staying novices around."
The betfair.com Novice Handicap Chase boasts a glittering entry that also includes the brilliant mare Like-A-Butterfly, who scored at Aintree earlier this month, Another Rum, the winner of the National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham who went on to finish third in the Scottish National, War Of Attrition, who shaped as if a step up in trip would suit when second over two miles at Aintree, Beau Colina, winner of his last three starts for Tony Martin, the Tom George-trained Lord Of Illusion, who has not raced since New Year's Day, and the Powers Gold Cup second Forget The Past.
Eoin Ryan, Betfair's Irish Communications Manager, commented: "The quality of the entries for this race is superb and is a testament to the excellent work done by the Punchestown executive and staff, and also to our continued support of the Festival itself. To have two Grand National winners entered along with other top class horses will surely provide a fantastic end to a wonderful National Hunt season."
AT THE RACES SUPPORTS ITS RACECOURSE PARTNERS WITH LOCAL RADIO PUSH TO OVER 3 MILLION LISTENERS
In conjunction with a number of its racecourse partners, At The Races has developed a major radio-based advertising and promotional campaign aimed at increasing racecourse attendances as well as raceday betting turnover.
Co-ordinating the campaign across an initial group of 8 racecourses - Exeter, Hexham, Kelso, Leicester, Perth, Stratford, Taunton and Towcester - At The Races has produced and fully funded a plan incorporating advertising and promotions across 17 regional radio stations. The intention is for similar campaigns to be rolled out for the other ATR affiliated racecourses in due course.
The campaign aims to prompt a broad range of listeners to consider racing when looking for a day out or planning their leisure time. Advertising will communicate the appeal of a day at the races while promotions will highlight specific fixtures, discounted and free admission offers and other bespoke messages. Both will encourage listeners to get out, do something different and enjoy the excitement and thrill of a day at their local racecourse.
Matthew Imi, Chief Executive of At The Races said, "At The Races is committed to supporting its racecourse partners, their businesses and the domestic racing industry as a whole. We are in a unique position to be able to coordinate and manage this sort of activity and believe that we can make a difference for our racecourses in influencing a person's decision on how to enjoy their leisure time. This campaign will be of great benefit to the partner racecourses involved and fits perfectly with our objective of communicating the appeal of racing to as wide an audience as possible. It also assists with two key objectives for the Board of any racecourse, namely increasing racecourse attendance and driving betting turnover."
The campaign breaks today and will reach 3,080,000 listeners around the United Kingdom and more than 20% of all adults within the covered areas.
Listeners to stations including Newcastle's Metro Radio, Edinburgh's Radio Forth and Exeter's Gemini FM will be offered the chance to win VIP hospitality at selected race days and up to £1,250 each in cash prizes.