Al Dancer provided Nigel Twiston-Davies with his third win in the rescheduled Betfair Hurdle at Ascot continuing the excellent recent record of novices in the two miles event. Tipped in the February Update, the grey was racing off a twelve pounds higher mark than when winning at Cheltenham in December. However, it wasn't enough to prevent the six year old from making it four out of four over timber. Racing keenly during the early stages, Sam Twiston-Davies' mount was still on the bridle between the final two flights and, following a clean jump at the last, he powered away to register a three and three quarters of a length win and booked his place for the Cheltenham Festival next month. The Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle is almost certain to be his target.
As discussed, I spent the majority of this week in the south and I had a very enjoyable few days visiting Ralph Beckett, Ed Walker, William Haggas and Roger Varian. Then, on the way home, I called in at David O'Meara's on Thursday. All five trainers were top-class and very accommodating. The handful have an awful lot to look forward to in 2019. I am working at Carlisle on Monday and Sunday week, plus I am heading to the RTV studios next Saturday. In between, I will arrange some more interviews for Ahead On The Flat.
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