Double Ross: In action at Cheltenham again
Double Ross would appear to have a little less on his plate as he makes a return to Cheltenham in the Fairlawne Handicap Chase on New Year’s Day.
Just eight line up for the Grade Three, compared with the 12 runners Double Ross faced when he lifted the Stewart Family Thank You Gold Cup at Prestbury Park on December 14.
Trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies had been worried his mud-lover would find the officially good ground a little too quick on that occasion, but he managed to hold off the challenge of Cantlow by two lengths and it should be easier underfoot amid the unpleasant weather across the country.
“Hopefully he’ll like the ground and we’re looking forward to it,” said Twiston-Davies.
“It’s the obvious race to go to, and it’s possibly an easier race, and certainly a smaller field this time.
“He’s in good form and as he’s still a novice, there are plenty of options for him later in the season.”
Only the pulled-up Silver Roque takes the opportunity to reoppose Double Ross, but recent Ludlow winner Pickamus and Cedre Bleu, second to Houblon Des Obeaux in a Listed event at Ascot last time, are in the line-up.
Alan King runs Kumbeshwar, who has placed in numerous Graded events, including at the course, but was a moderate 10th on his most recent outing in the Paddy Power Gold Cup.
“Kumbeshwar only just missed getting third place in the Haldon Gold Cup, and, though he ran as well as I could have expected in the Paddy Power Gold Cup at Cheltenham, maybe the race came a bit quick after Exeter,” he told www.alankingracing.co.uk.