Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Flemenstar Could Turn Back the Clock at Ascot

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Flemenstar Could Turn Back the Clock at Ascot

Article excerpt

FLEMENSTAR is no stranger to Grade One success and he can further add to his laurels with victory in the Betfair Ascot Chase at the Berkshire venue.

He enjoyed a welcome return to the limelight at Leopardstown over Christmas when the late fall of Un De Sceaux and Simply Ned running out of petrol combined to help the 11-year-old return to the winner's enclosure.

Formidable in his younger days with the mud flying, few will forget the scenes of pure jubilation as he won some of the biggest prizes in Ireland under the care of the effervescent Peter Casey.

Injury problems have plagued him in recent times and he is now with Anthony Curran, son of his owner, and has clearly been nursed back to at least something like his old self.

The extended two-mile-five furlong trip is going to take some getting, but one thing Flemenstar defi-nitely does is jump and it should be remembered he came close to winning the Irish Hennessy a few years ago, beaten less than two lengths by Sir Des Champs.

He might not quite stay three miles, but he should see this out and can prove be too sharp for dual King George winner Silviniaco Conti at this distance.

Premier Bond brings solid credentials to the table for the Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle. A useful type in bumpers, he has taken well to hurdling, finishing second to smart stablemate O O Seven at the first time of asking, before winning well from William H Bonney at Newbury.

There was any amount to like from that latest effort, not least that he recovered from a serious blunder to finish well on top of a subsequent winner, one who has earned quotes for the Supreme Novices' Hurdle.

This step up in trip is almost certain to bring out even better and it would be no surprise to see him in the race with this name at Cheltenham next month. Ben Pauling can barely disguise the regard in which he holds Drumacoo so there will be one or two long faces if he is turned over in the Sodexo Reynoldstown Novices' Chase. Formerly trained in Ireland, the seven-year-old dotted up from what looked a tidy field at Huntingdon in January, his first run anywhere for a whopping 412 days off. …

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