L'Homme Presse tops five Ascot Chase entries

L'Homme Presse heads just five entries for the Grade 2 Ascot Chase on Saturday.


The Venetia Williams-trained L'Homme Presse will bid to cement his Cheltenham Gold Cup claims in the Grade 2 Ascot Chase at Ascot this weekend.

The 2022 Brown Advisory Novices' Chase winner looked booked for second in the King George Chase later that year before unseating regular rider Charlie Deutsch at the final flight.

A subsequent injury kept him off the track since making a successful reappearance in the Fleur De Lys Chase at Lingfield's Winter Million meeting and Venetia Williams will be hoping her stable star can back that performance up at Ascot.

Edwards, who owns the nine-year-old with Peter and Patricia Pink, said: "Everything has been fine with L'Homme Presse since Lingfield.

"I thought it was an amazing comeback and we were thrilled with everything we saw from him. Hopefully, he can kick on again from there, starting this weekend in the Betfair Ascot Chase.

"I don't think the 'bounce factor' is a scientific thing. Every horse is different and that is not something that fazes us. We are only concerned about our horse, and he will run a race that suits him."

A maximum of four rivals will stand in his way with last year's runner-up Pic D'Orhy, who finished runner-up to Banbridge in the Grade 2 Silviniaco Conti at Kempton in January, seemingly the likely biggest threat for Paul Nicholls.

Joseph O'Brien's 2022 winner Fakir d'Oudairies will look to get back to his best after being well beaten in two competitive handicap chases this season, while Lucinda Russell's Ahoy Senor and Dan Skelton's Sail Away help complete the current field of five.

Elsewhere on the card, the Sodexo Live! Novices' Chase (registered as the Reynoldstown) has attracted five entries at the five-day stage.

The Anthony Honeyball-trained Kilbeg King narrowly tops the ratings following his third-place finish in the Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices' Chase.

Lucinda Russell's mare Apple Away, a Grade 1-winner over hurdles last season, has made a promising start to her career over fences and will be bidding to go one better than when second to the exciting Grey Dawning at Warwick last time.

Brave Kingdom made it two from two over fences when scoring in handicap company at Newbury before Christmas and looks interesting stepping up in grade, while Henry's Friend looks a similar progressive young chaser for the Ben Pauling team.

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