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Tuesday, December 10, 2002



Although the ante-post markets are looking quiet today, William Hill have released prices for the weekend, with 4 races from Hong Kong and the Tripleprint at Cheltenham. There are several exciting European runners out in Sha Tin, including speedballs (and old rivals) Malhub (7-1) and Continent (8-1) in the Sprint, Noverre (9-2) and Tillerman (8-1) in the Mile and Godolphins seasoned traveller Grandera, favourite at 11-8 for the Cup.

In the Tripleprint Martin Pipe's Thomas Pink winner Cyfor Malta is looking for another Cheltenham victory and has been cut from 5-1 to 9-2 and Nicky Hendersons Fondmort has also caught the punters eyes, backed in to 9-1 from 10-1.

HONG KONG SPRINT: 9-2 Believe, 5-1 Falvelon, Shonan Kampf, 13-2 All Thrills Too, 7-1 Malhub, 8-1 Continent, 12-1 Firebolt, Mistegic, Slap Shot, Zipping, 14-1 Agnetha, 20-1 Anabatik, Cape of Good Hope, Texas Glitter.

HONG KONG MILE: 7-2 Electronic Unicorn, 4-1 Admire Cozzene, 9-2 Noverre, 5-1 Nayyir, 8-1 Tillerman, 10-1 Tokai Point, 14-1 Gateman, Scenic Peak, Super Molly (from 20-1), 16-1 Juene King Prawn, 20-1 Dupont, Grand Delight, Olympic Express, 25-1 Cayoke.

HONG KONG CUP: 11-8 Grandera, 7-2 Elshin Preston, 9-2 Sarafan, 10-1 Paolini, Ulundi, 14-1 Dr More, Indian Creek, 16-1 Dano-Mast, Housemaster, 25-1 Red Pepper, 33-1 Cellini, Precision, 40-1 Come See You, 66-1 Royal Treasure.

HONG KONG VASE: 2-1 Aquarelliste, 3-1 Falcon Flight, 4-1 Ange Gabriel, 5-1 Ekraar, 8-1 Polish Summer, 14-1 Indigenous, 16-1 Delta Form, Guadalupe, 20-1 Cheers Hong Kong, 25-1 Idol, 66-1 Greenmore, Luckswell, 100-1 Caracoler, Rainbow and Gold.

TRIPLEPRINT GOLD CUP: 10-3 Horus, 9-2 Cyfor Malta (from 5-1), 7-1 Youlneverwalkalone, 9-1 Fondmort (from 10-1), 10-1 Foly Pleasant, Golden Goal, Thyne Will Tell, 14-1 Exit Swinger, Fadalko, Seebald, 16-1 Killultagh Storm, Wave Rock, 20-1 Master Tern, Wahiba Sands, 40-1 Saragann

WELSH NATIONAL: 5-1 Gunner Welburn, 8-1 Chives, The Bunny Boiler, 10-1 Bounce Back, 12-1 Harbour Pilot, Supreme Glory, 14-1 Carbury Cross, Gunther McBride, Rith Dubh, 16-1 Frantic Tan, Frosty Canyon, Its Himself, Stormez, Take Control, 20-1 BAR

QUEEN MOTHER CHAMPION CHASE: 7-2 Moscow Flyer, 6-1 Cenkos, 7-1 Flagship Uberalles, 10-1 Edredon Bleu, Native Upmanship, Seebald, 12-1 Tiutchev, 20-1 Armaturk, Dark'n Sharp, Latalomne, 25-1 Faldalko, Fadoudal du Cochet, Knife Edge, Royal Auclair, Truckers Tavern, 33-1 Fondmort, 40-1 Turgeonev (Others Upon Request)

KING GEORGE VI GOLD CUP: 6-4 Best Mate, 9-2 Bacchanal, 5-1 Florida Pearl, 8-1 Native Upmanship, 11-1 Douze Douze (from 12-1), 14-1 Marlborough, 20-1 Commanche Court, Flagship Uberalles, Hussard Collonges, Shooting Light, Valley Henry, 25-1 BAR

CHELTENHAM GOLD CUP: 9-4 Best Mate, 10-1 Commanche Court, 16-1 First Gold, Hussard Collonges, Rince Ri, 20-1 Bacchanal, Florida Pearl, Gingembre, Harbour Pilot, Marlborough, 25-1 Cyfor Malta, Royal Auclair, Valley Henry, 33-1 Ad Hoc, Bounce Back, Behrajan, Foxchapel King, Heros Collonges, Lord Noelie, See More Business, Shooting Light. (Others Upon Request)

GRAND NATIONAL: 14-1 Ad Hoc, 16-1 Cyfor Malta, Gingembre, 20-1 Bindaree, Davids Lad, Gunner Welburn, Kingsmark, More Than a Stroll, 25-1 Bounce Back, Carbury Cross, Grey Abbey, Gunther McBride, Rince Ri, Rith Dubh, Shotgun Willy, Supreme Glory. (Others Upon Request)

CHAMPION HURDLE: 7-1 Rooster Booster, 8-1 Davenport Milenium, Intersky Falcon, 10-1 Hors La Loi III, 12-1 Ned Kelly, Rhinestone Cowboy, 14-1 Like A Butterfly, Puntal, 16-1 Galileo, 20-1 Marble Arch, Scottish Memories, 25-1 In Contrast, 33-1 Adamant Approach, Copeland, Eternal Spring, Holy Orders, Landing Light, Polar Red. (Others Upon Request)

TRIUMPH HURDLE: 12-1 Don Fernando, 20-1 Saintsaire, Tramanto, 25-1 Fast Mix, 33-1 BAR

STAYERS HURDLE: 7-4 Baracouda, 6-1 Bannow Bay, Limestone Lad, 7-1 Galileo, 10-1 Classified, 14-1 Ilnamar, Le Sauvignon, 16-1 Brother Joe, 20-1 Liss A Paoraigh, 25-1 BAR


The British Horseracing Board today welcomed the Treasury's agreement to renew the valuable VAT Registration Scheme for Racehorse Owners following its review by Customs and Excise.

In confirming that the Scheme will continue unchanged in structure at least until a further review by Customs in 2005, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Healey, said that he recognised the importance to Racing of a scheme which, by regarding racehorse owners who generate sponsorship and other business income as taxable businesses, enables them to recover the VAT they incur on the goods and services which they purchase in connection with Racing. The further review in three years' time will take account of the wider impact of the tax system on racehorse owners, including recent reforms to betting taxation.

While the Scheme's structure will not be changed, the Treasury has invited BHB to participate in immediate discussions with Customs about tightening up on compliance with the existing rules, including those governing the securing and maintenance of sponsorship income.

Lord Donoughue, Chairman of BHB's VAT Registration Working Group, said: "I am delighted that BHB's highly professional contribution to the review has been rewarded with the Government's very welcome decision in support of a key British industry. The support my Group received from industry bodies and professional experts ensured that we made a very cogent case for the Scheme's retention."

BHB Secretary-General Tristram Ricketts added: "This is a great Christmas present for the Racing and Breeding industry and we are very grateful to Lord Donoughue and his colleagues for masterminding the industry's input to the review. Customs' desire to tighten up on compliance with the rules is consistent with BHB's own initiatives, which the Treasury has warmly welcomed, to promote a more businesslike approach towards racehorse ownership generally. We look forward to participating in the process."


Punters backing horses to be placed at Sedgefield this afternoon had a fantastic surprise after the first race when the Place dividend for the third horse home Sands Rising paid a whopping £85.90 on the Tote, a bigger price than the 50-1 on offer at SP!

The five-year-old came home third in the Sedgefield 'National Hunt' Novices' Hurdle behind 5-1 chance Castle Richard and 11-8 favourite Silver Knight.

"Hindsight is a wonderful thing in horseracing, but anyone who thought they were getting value backing the horse each-way anywhere other than on the Tote this afternoon will be kicking themselves, said Tote spokesman Jeremy Scott.

"Although in turn they won't be feeling quite as sick as those punters who baked the horse to Win, only to realise they could have got a 70%bigger return just backing their fancy to be placed on the Tote."

"Today's Place dividend is the biggest since last October when, as a two-year-old Aldora finished third in a race at Newmarket paying £87.40 on the Tote which again made a mockery of the 66-1 on offer at SP."

The biggest ever Place dividend declared on the Tote was £67.32 (to a 10p stake) at Nottingham back in October 1978.


A total number of 17 horses remain in the £100,000 Grade Three Tripleprint Gold Cup, the highlight of Cheltenham's 40th Anniversary Meeting on Saturday, December 14, 2002.

Cyfor Malta continues to head the handicap on 11st 12lb and is one of five remaining entries for Martin Pipe. The champion trainer could also rely on Wahiba Sands (11st 9lb), Seebald (11st 2lb), Exit Swinger (10st 12lb) and the current ante-post favourite Horus (9st 12lb).

Ireland is represented by two entries from the Christy Roche stable; the recent impressive Thurles winner Youlneverwalkalone (9st 11lb) and Risk Accessor (9st 4lb), as well as Tony Martin's useful performer Ross Moff (9st 7lb) and the Willie Mullins-trained Killultagh Storm (9st 11lb).

Another trainer with a multiple entry is Philip Hobbs. He could rely on Thyne Will Tell (9st 9lb), who was travelling well when falling in a valuable race at Wincanton last week, as well as the Thomas Pink Gold Cup third Wave Rock (9st 8lb) and Saragann (8st 12lb).

The Minehead-based handler said today: "I won't make any decision until Friday on my potential runners in the Tripleprint Gold Cup because they are all out of the handicap at the moment. As long as at least one of the top three in the handicap doesn't run I'm likely to have a runner. But I will wait until Friday - I hope the weights go up so they get in the handicap."

Meanwhile Lambourn-based Nicky Henderson revealed today that the Tripleprint Gold Cup is definitely on the agenda for Fondmort (10st 5lb). Henderson said: "Fondmort ran a good race at Wincanton the other day and at the moment I am very tempted to go for the Tripleprint Gold Cup. He's in good form."

The field is completed by Paul Nicholls' Fadalko (11st 10lb), Cheltenham regular Foly Pleasant (11st 3lb), Golden Goal (10st) and Master Tern (9st 1lb).


The reigning Smurfit Champion Hurdle winner Hors La Loi III heads a quality entry of 13 for the £75,000 Grade Two Victor Chandler Bula Hurdle, which takes place over two miles, one furlong at Cheltenham on Saturday, December 14, 2002.

James Fanshawe's charge will be making his seasonal debut and amongst his 12 possible rivals on Saturday are the rapidly-improving Intersky Falcon, who recently landed the Grade Two 'Fighting Fifth' Hurdle at Newcastle, and Rooster Booster, last season's Grade Three Vincent O'Brien County Hurdle victor at the National Hunt Festival, who created a most favourable impression when winning the Rehabilitation Of Racehorses Hurdle under 11st 12lb at Cheltenham's Open Meeting last month.

Philip Hobbs, trainer of Rooster Booster, reported today: "Rooster Booster will run in the Victor Chandler Bula Hurdle. He is in good form and has come out of his race at the Open Meeting very well. I'm looking forward to him running again."

There is a distinct international flavour to the entries with French handler Francois Doumen having two possible runners - Laveron, currently rated the best two-mile hurdler in France, and recent Newbury winner Never. An American challenge could also come from Jennifer Majette's Al Skywalker, who has arrived in Britain.

Other interesting contenders include last season's Smurfit Champion Hurdle runner-up Marble Arch, the Nicky Henderson-trained duo of Geos and Landing Light, as well as Martin Pipe's Puntal, who impressed many judges when winning at Market Rasen during the summer.

In total, there are 94 entries for all seven races at Cheltenham on Saturday, with quality running throughout the programme.

Peter McNeile, Commercial Manager at Cheltenham, said: "Both the Tripleprint Gold Cup and Victor Chandler Bula Hurdle are shaping up into fascinating contests and should prove to be two of the highlights of the season. The is also an excellent supporting card of five other decent races, with lots on offer to tempt the National Hunt enthusiast."


Class A, Grade Three, £100,000 Total Prize Fund, 2.30pm Cheltenham, Saturday, December 14, 2002, 2m 5f (New Course). For 5yo & upwards. Penalties: after November 30, a winner of a Class C steeple chase 4lb; of a Class A or B steeple chase 6lb. No penalty to increase a horse's weight above 11st 12lb. Entries closed November 27, entries revealed December 2 (35 entries), weights revealed December 4, five-day confirmation December 9 (17 remain), final declaration stage 10.15am, December 13. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including Monday, December 9, 2002.

1402P-1 CYFOR MALTA (FR) 9-11-12 David Johnson Martin Pipe
620314- FADALKO (FR) 9-11-10 Sir Robert Ogden Paul Nicholls
110022-3 WAHIBA SANDS 9-11-09 David Johnson Martin Pipe
1210P-4 FOLY PLEASANT (FR) 8-11-03 Jim Lewis & Friends Henrietta Knight
11122-2 SEEBALD (GER) 7-11-02 The Macca & Growler Partnership Martin Pipe
16420-U EXIT SWINGER (FR) 7-10-12 Sandicroft Stud I Martin Pipe
1P1153-3 FONDMORT (FR) 6-10-05 W. J. Brown Nicky Henderson
131114-2 GOLDEN GOAL (GER) 6-10-00 Favourites Racing Venetia Williams
1P-1311 HORUS (IRE) 7-9-12 Brian Kilpatrick Martin Pipe
221320-1 YOULNEVERWALKALONE (IRE) 8-9-11 J. P. McManus Christy Roche IRE
6622-P5 KILLULTAGH STORM (IRE) 8-9-11 Mrs Rose Boyd Willie Mullins IRE
1221-11F THYNE WILL TELL (IRE) 7-9-09 R J B Partners Philip Hobbs
52-1253 WAVE ROCK 7-9-08 Sterling Racing Syndicate Philip Hobbs
311/121/-F ROSS MOFF (IRE) 9-9-07 Seamus Ross Tony Martin IRE
31F2-40 RISK ACCESSOR (IRE) 7-9-04 J. P. McManus Christy Roche IRE
3F113-4P MASTER TERN (USA) 7-9-01 J. P. McManus Jonjo O'Neill
P12UF3 SARAGANN (IRE) 7-8-12 Jay Dee Bloodstock Limited Philip Hobbs

17 entries remain
4 Irish-trained

LATEST TOTE BETTING (CORRECT AT 09/12/02): 100/30 Horus, 5/1 Cyfor Malta, 6/1 Ross Moff, 7/1 Youlneverwalkalone, 8/1 Fondmort, 9/1 Foly Pleasant, 10/1 Exit Swinger, 10/1 Golden Goal, 10/1 Thyne Will Tell, 12/1 Seebald, 14/1 Fadalko, 14/1 Killultagh Storm, 16/1 Wave Rock, 20/1 Wahiba Sands, 25/1 Master Tern, 25/1 Risk Accessor, 40/1 Saragann



Aidan O'Brien's Tomahawk was Ireland's leading two-year-old according to the provisional end-of-season ratings issued by Turform. Awarded a mark of 116, Tomahawk is marginally preferred to his Ballydoyle stable companions Brian Boru, Hold That Tiger and Chevalier.

Not surprisingly, Aidan O'Brien's big guns top the three-year-old list. High Chaparral and Hawk Wing both stay in training next season and have received ratings of 128 and 125 respectively. Rock Of Gibraltar, recently retired to stud, was awarded a mark of 126.

The Turform Annual 2002, a comprehensive guide to the recent Flat season, will be published in February.


Golan, the winner of last year's Sagitta 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket, is back in Ireland and has arrived at Coolmore Stud where he will take up stallion duties next season.

Bred by Ballymacoll Stud Farm, he won four of his 11 starts and the decision to delay his stud career by season paid off when this son of Spectrum won the Group 1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot in July. Golan will stand at a fee of EUR20,000.

Coolmore Stud manager, Christy Grassick, said, "When you have the speed to win a Guineas and the stamina to win a King George, what more can you ask for in a horse?"


The Irish-bred Grandera is on course for the Group 1 Hong Kong Cup over 10 furlongs next weekend.

Trainer Saeed bin Suroor said, "Grandera has been doing everything very well since he arrived in Hong Kong from Australia and he will be ready for the big race.

"The good thing about Grandera is that he is a very tough horse. He has looked very good after each race, which has given us the confidence to run him.

"That is the reason we have sent him all over the world, to Dubai, Singapore, Australia, Ireland, England and Hong Kong.

"These are the last races of the season for us. We are looking forward to Grandera running in the final contest of the World Series which he leads."


Pat Smullen has arrived in Hong Kong where he will be based until March. The former Irish champion is there to ride as a Club jockey, retained by the Hong Kong Jockey Club rather than a trainer.

Smullen flew directly to Hong Kong early last week after his big race success on Dermot Weld's Dress To Thrill in the Grade 1 Matriarch Stakes in California.


It has been announced that Islington will stay in training as a four-year-old next season.

She is the latest high profile performer to be confirmed for next term, this news coming only weeks after Aidan O'Brien revealed that High Chaparral and Hawk Wing are among the top-class colts at Ballydoyle to race on.

Islington, a daughter of Sadler's Wells, was bred by the Ballymacoll Stud and enjoyed success in the Group 1 Nassau Stakes at Goodwood and the Yorkshire Oaks, another Group 1 event, at York this year.


Native Upmanship landed the EUR90,000 Grade 1 John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase for the second time on Sunday.

Owned by Mrs John Magnier and trained by Arthur Moore, the son of Be My Native had little difficulty in winning from Rince Ri and French raider First Gold and now heads to Kempton for the King George Chase on St Stephen's Day.

Native Upmanship was winning his sixth Grade 1 event and was sold for IR8,800gns at the Tattersalls (Ireland) Derby Sale in 1995.


The highly promising Valley Henry recorded his ninth career success and his sixth win over fences when taking the GQ Future Stars Chase on Friday.

A graduate of the Irish point-to-point field, Valley Henry was bred by Bill Ronayne and comfortably saw off the challenge of Irish raider Intelligent to win under Barry Geraghty.

The winner now heads for Leopardstown at Christmas for the EUR150,000 Ericsson Chase and is regarded as a Cheltenham Gold Cup contender by trainer Paul Nicholls.

Coolnagorna, a son of Park House Stud stallion Warcraft, is another progressing nicely and he ran out the easy winner of the Grade 2 GQ Winter Novices' Hurdle, his second success in Britain.

On this performance, Coolnagorna looks well above average and is certainly among the better staying novice hurdlers of the season so far.


Jessica Harrington, no stranger to success on this side of the Irish Sea, landed yet another big race winner in Britain over the weekend.

Her Spirit Leader, a daughter of Supreme Leader bred by Ms Elizabeth Kennedy, won the Listed William Hill Handicap Hurdle at Sandown and could now be aimed at the Tote Gold Trophy at Newbury in February.


Looking ahead to the New Year, both Tattersalls (Ireland) and Goffs have begun to accept entries for upcoming sales.

Tattersalls (Ireland) stage their two-day January National Hunt Sale on the 27th and 28th and are accepting entries by telephone on + 353 1 8864300. Further information can also be found at www.tattersalls.ie.

Goffs (www.goffs.com) begin their new year the following month with the February Mixed Sale. This is for both Flat and National Hunt stock and will run from February 10-12. Entries can be made by telephone on + 353 45 886600.


Catterick's meeting on Thursday (19 December) provides racegoers with the last opportunity to go racing in Yorkshire before Christmas.

The seven-race programme begins at 12.15 p.m., the feature races being The goracing.co.uk Handicap Chase over the extended three miles, one furlong and The Samaritans Silver & Gold Novices' Hurdle (two miles, three furlongs).

The latter race highlights the work of the Samaritans of Northallerton and The Dales, as they embark upon one of their busiest times of the year. The winning connections will receive solid gold watches to represent the maxim that ‘silence is golden' and to emphasise that the Samaritans are willing to listen to people with seemingly insurmountable problems every day of the year.

The ‘Join The 2003 Catterick Race Club Today' Handicap Chase over two miles draws attention to Membership at Catterick for next year, applications for which are now being taken. For 28 scheduled racedays at Catterick in 2003, along with 12 reciprocal fixtures at other racecourses and eleven selected Yorkshire County Cricket Club matches, the cost of membership at the course is £90 (single), £165 (joint), £175 for a member and guest (transferable), while a Reserved Car Park Label can be purchased for £35.

Catterick is also gearing up to celebrate the passing of the Old Year and the start of the New Year with the traditional two-day meeting on New Year's Eve Tuesday and New Year's Day Wednesday. Bookings are now being taken from racegoers wishing to dine in style in the Richmond Suite on either or both days. For £41.50 per person on New Year's Eve and £46.50 per person on New Year's Day, racegoers can enjoy a three-course lunch and coffee, the use of the Richmond Suite with reserved tables, private bar, television screens, Tote betting facility, a Day Members' Badge and complimentary racecard. Bookings are being made via Catterick's Caterers Craven Gilpin & Son on (0113) 287 6387.

For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive

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