Grand National winner Corach Rambler among entries for feature race at Kelso
Although Perth and Kinross trainer Lucinda Russell is hedging her bets for now and also has an entry in for the nine-year-old bay gelding at Cheltenham in Gloucestershire, she’s unlikely to go unrepresented in the 2.50pm feature race, offering a top prize of £26,015, as she’s got two other horses pencilled in for it as well, Haute Estime and Your Own Story.
The 57-year-old said: “It’s a race we know well, having won it with One for Arthur in the autumn before he went on the win his Grand National.
“Corach is a different horse altogether from Arthur as he is so smart and clever and we’ve never really had anything else like him in the yard.
“Saturday will be the start of a season that will tell us a lot about him – will it be another crack at the National or will we give him the chance to develop into a Gold Cup contender?
“He was so fresh and well after Aintree that you just don’t how much more improvement there is to come, and something like the Betfair Chase could be an option, depending on how this weekend goes.”
Corach Rambler’s potential rivals at Kelso, besides his stablemates, could include Empire Steel, trained by Sandy Thomson at his nearby Lambden stables.
Winner of the Bet365 Premier Steeplechase at Kelso in March, the nine-year-old bay gelding, lined up to be ridden by Ryan Mania, is among ten other entries, including Fife trainer Nick Alexander’s Elvis Mail, for the feature race.
Thomson is also lining up Cedar Hill for a crack at a sixth win at his home-town course in the £20,000 Beauchamp Estates Handicap Chase.
The nine-year-old brown gelding, again to be ridden by Mania, is one of ten entries for that 4pm race, including Russell’s Bollingerandkrug and Gold des Bois, trained by Iain Jardine near Carrutherstown, both fellow previous winners at the course.
Thomson and Jardine have entries in for the 2.15pm Clifford, Martin and Sarah Firth Memorial Novices’ Handicap Chase too, Baron Briggs and Swallows Song respectively, as have Cheshire’s Oliver Greenall and Josh Guerriero, with Horacio Apple’s, a two-time winner last term.
Russell is also considering sending Esprit du Potier down to Kelso to contest the opening 1.40pm Just Add Tonic Events Maiden Hurdle.
No fewer than 30 entries are in for that race, offering a top prize of £4,901, the others including Thomson’s Rob Roy Macgregor and Valleyview Tommy, Jardine’s Prontoanita and Selkirk trainer Stuart Coltherd’s Flash du Pistolet.
Thomson, Jardine and Coltherd could also be represented in the concluding 5.10pm Racing TV 100% Profits returned to Racing Conditionals’ Training Series Handicap Hurdle, by Theirshegoes, Call Me Harry and Dequall respectively, as could Hawick’s Paul Robson and Donald Whillans, by Haveyougotmymoney and Nights in Venice, and Lilliesleaf’s Jackie Stephen, by Joanna I’m Fine.
Gates will open to the public at 11.30am and entry to the seven-race meeting is £22 in advance or £26 on the day. For details, go to https://www.kelso-races.co.uk/