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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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George looks to Warwick for MajalaHeadlines
Tom George

Tom George is looking forward to seeing Majala test his powers at a higher level in what promises to be an informative Racing Post Arkle Trial at Warwick on Saturday.

The two-mile Grade Two contest, better known as the Kingmaker Novices' Chase, has attracted a strong field of 10 runners after the race was reopened, with Paul Nicholls' impressive Newbury winner Fago taking top billing.

Like Fago, Majala was acquired from France, but he disappointed on his British bow at Wetherby in December. However, he has gradually got the hang of the chasing game and after a couple of decent efforts in defeat, has turned in victories at Taunton and Haydock.

The seven-year-old is also entered in the Betfair Super Saturday Chase at Newbury, but with Simonsig bound for that race, Majala appears almost certain to head to Warwick.

George said: "He'll probably go to Warwick and he's in good form at home.

"He was very French in his jumping when he first arrived and that was his downfall, but hopefully he's improving on that front. Paddy (Brennan) has done a lot of schooling work with him and unfortunately circumstances have meant he hasn't been able to ride him on the track the last twice.

"I'll have a chat with him this week, but he'll probably be going to Newbury I would imagine. The horse is also entered at Newbury but he is too far wrong in the weights in that race, so he'll hopefully go to Warwick."

Whatever the result this weekend, George is unsure whether Majala is the right type of horse to line up in the Arkle Trophy itself at Cheltenham next month.

"I'm not sure about Cheltenham for him. I think he might be more of a heavy ground at Haydock sort of horse, but we'll get the weekend out of the way and then make a plan from there," he said.

Also entered in this weekend's Warwick heat are David Pipe's His Excellency, Caroline Keevil's Marshal Zhukov and the Venetia Williams-trained Drumshambo.

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