3m5f Agetur UK Ltd Classic Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (GBB Race) (Class 1) (5yo+)
Gericault Roque does look like a progressive looking novice chaser, but he hasn’t managed to get his head in front this season, yet has been raised 9lbs for those defeats. He remains with potential but looks a little skinny for this now.
Instead, I am keen to take another young chaser in the shape of GRACE A VOUS ENKI who is having his first chase start for Paul Nicholls. This French import picked up plenty of chasing experience before making the switch to Great Britain, but has been only tested on quick ground over hurdles for the yard.
Those runs could drastically underestimate him and I think you will see a completely different animal given the opportunity now to jump a fence on deep ground. An opening handicap mark of 131 could prove to be extremely lenient for Grace A Vous Enki and 12/1 feels way too big given his potential to improve for this sort of test.
I am also going to stick to my guns with ECLAIR SURF who we tipped up at the New Year’s day meeting at Cheltenham only to be confirmed as non-runner. This is a deeper race than the New Year’s day handicap but there is still a fair chance we haven’t seen the best of Eclair Surf. He is a big individual and showed his liking for a stern test and soft conditions when winning a fair handicap off a mark 2lbs lower at Sandown last season. He shaped with a lot of promise in both of his starts this season.
First falling when tracking Becher Chase winner Snow Leopardess in a quality handicap at Bangor, before going just as well as eventual Welsh National winner, Iwilldoit at Chepstow on quick ground in the Welsh National Trial before making an error four from home.
Eclair Surf made two novicey errors in both races having jumped well otherwise and I’d have expected him to go close if not making them. A mark of 133 still feels low for a horse that ran in the Grade 1 Challow Novice Hurdle in 2019 and 14/1 is a nice price to go to war if he can put it altogether in an open contest.
1pt win Grace A Vous Enki @12/1, 15:00 Warwick, Saturday
1pt win Eclair Surf @14/1, 15:00 Warwick, Saturday