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Saturday 25 January 2020

Dan's the man on the treble

Skelton can land Cheltenham spoils to pay for the festive season

Destrier looks a solid bet Pic: Racing Post
Destrier looks a solid bet Pic: Racing Post

We saw some good performances at Cheltenham on Friday and there is plenty of high-quality action again at Prestbury Park today.

I fancy it will be a good day for Dan Skelton and I am hoping he will help me pay for Christmas!

At nine-years-old NOT THAT FUISSE (1.55, Cheltenham) is the oldest runner in this high-class handicap. Most are aged six or seven, so it is highly likely that improvement could be forthcoming from lots of contenders.

He has sneaked in off bottom weight, which I think is no accident, for master planner Dan Skelton and, judged by the form of his novice chase effort at Uttoxeter, a mark of 131 could be very generous.

The horses that finished just in front and behind him in October are already rated higher than that and Not That Fuisse subsequently split the high-class pair Al Dancer and Getaway Trump at Cheltenham.

His latest run was disappointing but that stopped his mark rising, and it could be a blessing in disguise.

DESTRIER (1.20, Cheltenham) looks a solid bet and he is my nap today. He enjoyed a meteoric rise through the novice chase ranks last season which began at Southwell and he ended up finishing an excellent third in a Grade One at Aintree.

He reappeared with a really good effort at Exeter and has certainly earned top weight in this event which looks less competitive.

Last year's County Hurdle winner CH'TIBELLO (3.05, Cheltenham) has broken out of handicaps and has a strong chance of landing this Grade Two on his seasonal reappearance and can complete a terrific day for his trainer.

Most of his rivals are also making their reappearance, but given the yards they are from, I doubt that fitness will be the major gulf between them, although none are as battle hardened as Ch'tibello.

Call Me Lord apparently cannot go left handed and has not run this way round for a long time. This looks like a last roll of the dice over hurdles before he goes back over fences.

Dave Nevison is betting pundit for Racing TV, the home of British and Irish racing. For more on the leading horseracing channel, which shows every race live from 61 racecourses, please visitwww.racingtv.com/join.

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