Balder Succes holds rock solid claims in Desert Orchid Chase
Balder Succes can take advantage of a drop in grade to get back to winning ways in the Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton today (1.40).
The Alan King trained six-year-old developed into a top class novice chaser last season, landing a brace of Grade 2 victories at Warwick and this venue before going on complete the hat-trick in the Grade 1 Maghull Novices’ Chase at Aintree.
Balder Succes only had to be driven out to beat the highly regarded Simply Ned by four lengths in the latter after a superb round of jumping, and went on to run a blinder at the Punchestown Festival on his final start last season when a 3/4 length third of eight to God’s Own in the Grade 1 Ryanair Chase.
The son of Goldneyev was then off the track for 187 days before finishing a highly encouraging runner-up to God’s Own in the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter, where after blundering badly three from home he stuck on well to go down by five lengths.
It was a solid effort trying to concede the winner 7lb, and Balder Succes was then far from disgraced last time out at Sandown when a seven length fourth of 10 to Dodging Bullets in the Grade 1 Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown.
The return to this venue should suit, as will the drop back down into Grade 2 company.
Balder Succes is also the highest rated runner in the line-up off 163, and with Wayne Hutchinson in the saddle looks the one they all have to beat.
Hinterland finished 1 1/2 lengths in front of Balder Success when third in the Tingle Creek, but is very hit and miss and can never be relied upon to his race.
I also think that this track will not play to his strengths, and for that reason expect the consistent Balder Succes to turn the tables this afternoon.
A bigger danger to the selection could be Module, who is rated just 1lb below Balder and is a very useful sort on his day.
The Tom George trained gelding has not been at his best in two starts this season, but the seven-year-old’s neck defeat of Dodging Bullets in last season’s Game Spirit Chase at Newbury and subsequent third behind Sire De Grugy in the Queen Mother Champion Chase at the Cheltenham Festival read very well in the context of this contest.
On those runs, Module is the one most likely to give Balder Succes most to think about.