Aristo and Sir Chauvelin are course and distance winners worth backing
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | February 6, 2016
Musselburgh’s Sunday card is Festival Trials day north of the border and, with Cheltenham’s showpiece event at Prestbury Park little more than a month away, a couple of course and distance winners are well worth backing at the Scottish coast venue.
It pays to side with the Aristo
In the County Hurdle (15:00), Aristo Du Plessis can defy top weight to record a third win on the spin around this track at a terrific price on good to soft ground which he relishes.
James Ewart’s bay gelding has won 50 per cent of his dozen outings, including a facile 12-length romp over the trip at this course back in November.
Aristo Du Plessis carried 11st 12lb on both that occasion and his subsequent outing on New Year’s Day, also winning over the distance at Musselburgh when making all the running again.
Partnered by Diarmuid O’Regan once more, the six-year-old faces off against Karl Burke horse Pearl Castle and Aidan Coleman mount Zaidiyn – opposition Aristo Du Plessis has already proven he can get the better of.
Chauvelin also seeks third Musselburgh win
Sir Chauvelin is also a dual course and distance winner, so Jim Goldie’s four-year-old can land the hat-trick by taking the Triumph Hurdle Trial (14:00).
Although the gelding also carries top weight in this four-horse contest and finished third of six in a run at Doncaster between his two victorious Musselburgh outings, the manner of those wins mean his rivals have plenty to find.
Following up a seven-length success in a juvenile hurdle with an even more impressive 12-length storm in another in January, four-year-old Sir Chauvelin looks splendid value to deliver again.
While Paul Nicholls has once again booked Sam Twiston-Davies to ride race favourite Tommy Silver, this is only his second run and he finished runner-up on debut behind fellow French raider Fixe Le Kap at Newbury.
Dan Skelton’s Ashoka, meanwhile, won at Warwick before Christmas, but then flopped when fourth of seven to Gibralfaro at the King George meeting at Kempton.
Now partnered by Richard Johnson, who rode two winners and a second at Sandown on Saturday, Sir Chauvelin looks the horse to beat in a small field.
13:00 Brain Power
13:30 Got The Nac
14:00 Sir Chauvelin
15:00 Aristo Du Plessis
16:00 Damiens Dilemma
16:30 Cup Final