Ascot tips for Saturday: God’s Own to be toast of punters in Stella Artois Chase
David Metcalf | 19 November 2016
God’s Own bets have plenty going for them Stella Artois 1965 Chase
God’s Own can make his class tell to give weight all-round and land the 2m 5f Stella Artois 1965 Chase on an excellent seven-race card at Ascot (14:05).
The Tom George trained gelding rounded off last season in tremendous style when landing back-to-back Grade 1 contests at Aintree and Punchestown.
He took the scalp of the mighty and ill-fated Vautour in the latter when staying on strongly to score by two lengths.
That is form right out of the top drawer, even allowing for the fact that Vautour may not have been at his best after a long and tough campaign, and God’s Own looked as good as ever on seasonal reappearance at Aintree last month when runner-up to Third Intention in the Grade 2 Old Roan Handicap Chase.
Weighted to gain revenge
The eight-year-old stuck to the task really well to go down by 1 3/4 lengths and now meets the winner on 12lb better terms.
God’s Own is also better off at the weights with the the re-opposing Vibrato Valtat and Royal Regatta, who finished in third and fifth respectively, and the terms of this race suggest he should come out on top of the aforementioned trio.
His main danger is undoubtedly 2015 Queen Mother Champion Chase winner Dodging Bullets who is rated 6lb his inferior but receives 10lb, but Paul Nicholls’ charge has flopped in races over 2m 4f in the past and may not relish this 2m 5f test.
Vanituex odds say he should strike in Shawbrook
Vaniteux can take advantage of what looks a handy mark to land the 2m Shawbrook Handicap Chase (15:15).
The Nicky Henderson trained gelding has always been held in high regard and developed into a top class novice chaser last season.
After scoring in terrific style on his chasing debut at Kempton, Vantieux lost little in defeat at the same venue when beaten just a neck by Ar Mad after bad blunder at the first.
The seven -year-old did well to get so close after that error seemed to unsettle him, and quickly got back to winnings ways when the Grade 2 Lightning Novices’ Chase at Doncaster.
Vaniteux looked set to win by a convincing margin when taking the third last but had to be driven right out to beat Arzal by 3 3/4 lengths in blustery conditions after idling on the run-in.
Lightning form worked out well
However, in hindsight it was a much better performance than it seemed as the runner-up went on to bolt-up in a Grade 1 at Aintree and the third home Fox Norton – who was beaten a further 10 lengths – has developed into a top class 2m chaser this season and is currently second favourite for the 2017 Queen Mother Champion Chase.
The selection then ran in the Arkle at the Cheltenham Festival and was still bang in contention and only 1 1/2 lengths behind eventually winner Douvan when blundering and unseating his rider two from home.
Whether he would have won is highly debatable but he would have given Douvan something to think about and Vaniteux looks potentially very well-treated now pitched into handicap company off a mark of 154.
Ascot tips for Saturday, November 19
12:25 Coastal Tiep
12:55 Potters Corner
13:30 Midnight Sapphire
14:05 God’s Own (NAP)
15:15 Vaniteux (NB)
15:50 Global Stage