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  • Writer's pictureSimon Long

There is no place quite like Sandown for Edwardstone

Edwardstone is 2-3 over fences at Sandown, so, despite all the talk being about El Fabiolo and Jonbon, punters might be advised to think twice before dismissing Barbury’s stable-star when calculating the Grade 1 Celebration Chase, which brings the curtain down on the jumps season on Saturday.

Impressive when winning the Henry VIII on the Esher course as a novice, Edwardstone then left several big reputations in tatters when landing the 2022 Tingle Creek Chase in fast time before going down bravely on his sword against Jonbon in that same prestigious race 12 months later.

Alan said:”Edwardstone was quite stiff after his fall in the Champion Chase at Cheltenham, but my physio is now much happier with him and he seems to be coming along fine. He really attacked the fences at the Festival, but, while it had paid off previously in the Game Spirit at Newbury, it was always going to be that much tougher in what was a strong race in testing ground.”

Obviously there are again two very good horses standing in our way, but Edwardstone has been working well with Trueshan and the more underfoot conditions improve the better his chance.

I would not be at all surprised if Helnwein outruns his big odds in the final of the novice hurdle championship at Sandown. Whatever happens here, Helnwein could be an exciting prospects when he goes over fences next season, but he has done the Noel Fehily syndicate proud this winter and you ignore him at your peril.

Alan said:”Helnwein bumped into a pretty smart winner in Secret Squirrel in the qualifier at Taunton, but this has been his target all season.”

Helnwein now gets a 5lb pull with Secret Squirrel, and, while the stiffer Sandown climb will suit our fellow better, the winner has now twice won at Taunton and also been victorious at Kempton, so we can but hope that sharper tracks favour Secret Squirrel,

Tom Cannon has two rides today at Sandown.

Looks vulnerable against some of today's rivals unless good ground is the making of him.

Owners - Noel Fehily Racing Syndicates - Trainer - Alan King.

Needs El Fabiolo and Jonbon to underperform but he may well be best of the rest.

Owners - Robert Abrey, Ian Thurtle - Trainer - Alan King.


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