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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Gallops Report
Lambourn, December 19
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Richard Hannon breezed some of his all-weather team and EMELL out strongly in his winding up work for the conditions race at Lingfield.

The four-year-old takes on mainly older rivals but his trainer looks to have found a good opportunity in what amounts to a drop in class.

BALTIC KNIGHT to have strong claims in the Listed Quebec Stakes.

He shaped well when switching to Polytrack last time and also caught the eye grabbing the ground in his breeze on Friday morning.

FILOSOFO shown good form on both turf and sand and looked in good order working ahead of a possible trip to Kempton next week.

Andrew Balding will find out in the Class Two handicap on the same Lingfield card just how good MYMATECHRIS

The three-year-old has looked invincible in recent runs on the all-weather and chases a hat-trick as he takes a step up the class ladder.

Mymatechris moved beautifully in a swinging canter at Kingsclere.

RIZAL PARK to have taken this week's winning exertions in his stride and could try to strike again at Kempton.

That remark also applies to Thursday's scorer HAINES, is likely to keep his eye in for the remainder of the winter.

West Country/Midlands, December 18

DUNRAVEN STORM in good order breezing up one of Philip Hobbs' all-weather gallops ahead of a fascinating novice chase at Ascot on Friday.

The talented gelding has posted two wins and a second over fences this term and is a past winner at the Berkshire course.

MENORAH have another crack at the King George VI on Boxing Day and is doing everything right at home.

The nine-year-old was pulled up in the Kempton highlight a year ago, but has always exuded class in his work and appears to be operating at a higher level than ever before in his chase career.

DOUBLE ROSS enjoyed the rub of the green this season, but Nigel Twiston-Davies' chestnut has shown no ill effects from his departures at Newton Abbot and Haydock.

That was interspersed by a creditable placed effort in the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby.

The normally impeccable jumper is giving off encouraging signals.

BENBENS, well when unseating in the Becher Chase, has also shown no adverse reaction following that unfortunate exit.

He worked purposefully up the steep Fibresand strip midweek and is on course for a tilt at the Coral Welsh National at Chepstow.

Lambourn, December 17

JOSSES HILL at the top of his game in his winding-up work for a career switch for fences later this week.

Last season's Supreme Novices' Hurdle runner-up has fully recovered from a splint problem that set him back in the autumn, and has shown a penchant for the larger obstacles in his schooling.

His resounding triumph at Aintree in April stamps him as being out of the top drawer, and his appearance at Ascot on Friday is eagerly awaited.

L'AMI SERGE a big impression when scoring on his first outing since joining Henderson from Guillaume Macaire.

The gigantic gelding travelled and quickened up like a horse to follow at Newbury and has earned a step up the class ladder.

His target is the Kennel Gate Hurdle on the same Ascot card. He looked in very good order in his latest stretch on the Faringdon Road grass.

OPEN HEARTED a positive start to his chasing career last season and should acquit himself well in handicaps.

He looks ready for a run, and has an entry at Ascot at the weekend.

SUGAR BARON a favourable impression on his debut and has produced some eyecatching work ahead of the bumper.

The son of Presenting already has experience of Ascot and if the weather remains dry, that would be in his favour.

SIGN OF A VICTORY been displaced as favourite for the Ladbroke and his chance of landing that prize would be equally compromised by rain, which is forecast towards the end of the week.

Minehead, December 16

GARDE LA VICTOIRE poised for Ladbroke Hurdle action and moved beautifully in his work on one of the all-weathers at Sandhill this morning.

Philip Hobbs' Somerset yard is aptly named as the trainer has an enviable complex of artificial facilities consisting of both Polytrack and woodchip.

The talented Garde La Victoire will have top weight in the Ascot finale on Saturday, but he has worked with real

├ęclat since landing the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham and was unlucky on his first run back at Aintree.

The workings of the weights means the five-year-old will have to carry more than any of his foes, but he is a big horse and built for that job.

MIDNIGHT SPIN been showing plenty of gusto in his work on both surfaces.

Having hit the woodwork a couple of times, the four-year-old looks in the mood to pick up a maiden or novice hurdle, possibly at Towcester on Thursday.

ROYAL PLAYER not quite live up to expectations at the end of last season and ran adequately upon his return to the fray.

However he is a willing worker and almost certainly better than he has shown so far ahead of an assignment at Ludlow on Wednesday.

WISHFULL THINKING overcome adversity to put together the most rewarding season of his career with his triumphs in the Old Roan and Peterborough Chases.

The chestnut has taken his Huntingdon exertions in his stride and will not be resting on his laurels, though the Melling Chase back at Aintree looks his main objective, as things stand.

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