We are just a few weeks into the new National Hunt season but already we are seeing some potential stars of the 2011 Cheltenham Festival making their first moves, perhaps the most impressive and exciting runner so far has been Tell Massini who is having his debut season over fences. The Tom George horse had a very exciting hurdling campaign last season despite disappointing at the Cheltenham Festival, and he will now be aimed at the RSA Chase this season after impressing on his chasing debut at Stratford. Tell Massini went off as an odds-on favourite in the Shottery Beginners Chase as he made his seasonal debut and he simply hosed up to claim an impressive victory.
The bookmakers were certainly impressed with the run and slashed Tell Massini into joint favouritism for the RSA Chase, he is now alongside the likes of Mikael D'haguenet and Time For Rupert who is another making the step up to chasing company. It does have to be said that the Stratford race was not of the highest quality but Tell Massini jumped with confidence in the main, while Paddy Brennan hardly got off the bridle which is an encouraging sign for any of his ante post backers. He will of course be on a program heading towards the Cheltenham Festival and his next run is likely to give us further clues, the RSA Chase is always a tough race and the 2011 race is shaping up to be no different. Mikael D'haguenet as mentioned is the horse to watch for Willie Mullins, he won the Ballymore at the 2009 Cheltenham Festival and after missing last season through injury is expected to be a real star over fences this winter.