2013 Arkle Trophy tips Fago to go far
By Racingnews | Monday, February 18, 2013, 12:13
Sprinter Sacre was a prohibitive odds-on chance when landing
last season's Arkle Trophy and his stablemate Simonsig has a similar
stranglehold on this year's race.
seven-year-old, himself a winner at last season's Festival when running
away with the Neptune Novices' Hurdle, has made a smooth transition to
fences this term, winning twice in the space of six days at Ascot and
Kempton by a combined distance of 84 lengths.
would crab the form of those wins, which came at odds of 2/9 and 1/8
respectively, but his most recent success, when giving the 148-rated
Hinterland 11lb and a 35-length thrashing, was no mean feat and he was
pretty much foot perfect on each occasion.
no wonder then that bookmakers have him so short for the Arkle – they
tend to have long memories – although news that he is to miss the Game
Spirit Chase due to an unsatisfactory trachea wash and go straight for
the Arkle could see him ease out a little from the current best of 5/6.
so, I'm not in the habit of tipping up short-priced horses and
especially this far in advance. For one, he's got to get there in one
piece, which should never be taken for granted, and he may well start at
around the same price on the day.
We can get
stuck in then, should we wish, but for the purpose of an ante post tip
you're ideally looking for a horse with the potential to shorten, and
the one that takes the eye is the Paul Nicholls-trained FAGO.
ex-French gelding made a successful British debut when hacking up over
2m1f at Newbury last month, giving the impression there was plenty more
improvident to come. Unusually for a Nicholls runner, he blew quite hard
after the race and that's a sure sign he was undercooked.
expecting far more the polished article when he runs in the Kingmaker
Novices' at Warwick this weekend and while there are some decent sorts
entered, I'd fully expect him to win it and in the process put himself
bang in the picture for the Arkle.
his current rating of 150 entitles him to go close and he may well
improve that this weekend. The fact he stays a bit further than 2m -
didn't quite home over 2m6f in France – is a real plus as the Arkle can
be a brutal race and stamina always comes into play up the Cheltenham
At 10/1 with Paddy Power,
he's got to be worth a bet, although I can't let any Arkle piece go
without a mention of Overturn, who must be one of the most versatile
horses in training, having won so many big races on the flat and over
hurdles – and now over fences (three times).
latest success at Musselburgh was perhaps his most polished yet, even
though his main rival probably ran below par. Still, you can only beat
what's put in front of you and his jumping was a joy to behold at the
If he gets to Cheltenham in the
same sort of form, and he has a good track record in that respect, he
must take all the beating. I can see him duelling with Simonsig coming
round the turn with Fago a couple of lengths adrift and going well...
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