Horse By Horse King George VI Chase Guide
The busy festive period is one of the highlights of the season for jumps racing fans, and the majority of the attention will rightly fall on Kempton Park on Boxing Day.
Few races can match the King George VI Chase for prestige when it comes to the National Hunt calendar, and we have another stellar field engaged for one of the most important races in the sport.
Might Bite looks set to start as a warm order for Nicky Henderson, but this is far from a one horse race, and we have profiled each of the Boxing Day runners in the big one..
The hot favourite, and the one to beat.
Might Bite stole our hearts when he all but pulled himself up in the RSA Chase when well clear, only to get back up on the line and claim a famous win. He returned this season with a lovely seasonal debut success at Sandown, and there is no doubt he is the progressive 2nd season novice on the upward curve.
Hugely talented, if a little quirky, this will be the biggest test of his career, but he looks ready to claim the prize.
Bristol De Mai
Fresh off a brilliant win in the Betfair Chase, Bristol De Mai goes to the King George two wins away from winning his connections the £1m bonus. He wiped the floor with the field at Haydock in testing ground, and if the rain comes, the Nigel Twiston-Davies trained horse will be the one to beat.
Unlikely to be good enough on decent ground but has to be respected given his recent improvement.
Sensationally won the race as a novice last season, but things haven't panned out since. Beaten by Many Clouds at Cheltenham, missed the Festival with an injury and then disappointed in the Long Distance Hurdle on his first start of the season earlier this month at Newbury.
Hard to fancy with any real confidence after the way he emptied so quickly on his return from injury but if he is anything like back to his best, his price will look massive.
A rock solid horse who has continued to improve for Nicky Henderson over the past year. Almost took advantage of Might Bite throwing the RSA Chase away, and then returned in the Ladbrokes Trophy when running a massive race to finish 2nd with plenty of weight on his back.
Deserves his chance and will run well for each-way punters, but RSA Chase form suggests he isn't in the same league as Might Bite.
A fascinating entry stepping up to 3m for the first time for Colin Tizzard. A Grade 1 winner over 2m and then over 2m4f in the Melling Chase, connections are convinced he will enjoy the extra trip on offer at Kempton on Boxing Day.
Failed to run down Politologue when odds-on for the Tingle Creek down at 2m at Sandown earlier this month but remains a classy animal. Stamina remains the major question mark but he has shaped well in the past, and is good enough to run a big race.
Tea For Two
Each-way claims on his very best form and was 4th last year, but this looks like a deeper contest. Beaten out of sight by Bristol De Mai at Haydock in very testing ground and although he will run better in decent conditions, and at a venue he enjoys, it's hard to imagine him troubling the market leaders.
Needs everything to fall into place. Unlikely
Expect a bold show from the front from a horse that enjoys Kempton, but he has it all on his plate. A decent handicapper who consistently falls short at the very highest level, and that will be the outcome again.
Thanks, but no thanks.
Once a promising novice chaser, things haven't quite panned out for him in open company for Gary Moore. Tends to run well at the top level without ever looking like winning and with an official mark of 153, he is way below the standard needed to win a King George.
Should be a good day out for the owners.
- Might Bite
- Fox Norton
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