Nigel Twiston-Davies upbeat about chances of Blaklion in Hennessy Gold Cup


The Hennessy Gold Cup Chase on Saturday (3.10pm) is the feature race of the national hunt season at Newbury. Pic: Gavin James/GJ Multimedia (Courtesy of Newbury Racecourse).

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NIGEL TWISTON-DAVIES has given an upbeat report about the chances of RSA Chase winner Blaklion in the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury on Saturday.

The seven-year-old pleased his trainer when finishing fourth in the Grade 2 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby on October 29 on his first start of the season that followed a progressive novice campaign where he won three of seven starts.

The consistent gelding finished in the first four in all of his completed runs in his first season over fences; highlighted by a tenacious victory in the Grade 1 RSA Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.

At Cheltenham Blaklion, who is priced at 8-1 for the Hennessy, raced close to the pace for the bulk of the extended three mile contest before staying on well. Another game effort is anticipated by Twiston-Davies who is also represented by 50-1 shot Double Ross.

“Blaklion has improved for the run at Wetherby and is in very good heart,” said Twiston-Davies who bids to win Newbury’s feature race jumps race of the season for the second time having scored with King’s Road in 2000.

“He has got the right sort of profile for this because he is a second season novice. He will like the softer ground and longer trip, so it all looks good for him. I am quite bullish about it.

“Double Ross won well at Chepstow earlier in the season. He is obviously very much more exposed than Blaklion but we are hoping he runs well.”

The first of the two-day meeting at Newbury starts tomorrow (Friday) at 12.30pm where the feature race is the £50,000 Grade Two bet365 Long Distance Hurdle at 2.10pm.

Saturday’s card commences at 12.20pm. The feature race, the £200,000 Hennessy Gold Cup Chase, has attracted a field of 20 runners and is scheduled for 3.10pm.

Hennessy Gold Cup betting (bet365) 5/1 Native River; 7/1 Vyta Du Roc; 8/1 Un Temps Pour Tout; Blaklion; Smad Place; Saphir Du Rheu; 9/1 Henri Parry Morgan; 16/1 Theatre Guide; 18/1 Houblon Des Obeaux; 20/1 bar

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