Betfair Chase Review: King George Next Stop for Bristol De Mai
Anyone who heeded our advice of last week and took the 20-1 available about Bristol De Mai to win Kempton’s christmas showpiece, the 32Red King George V1 Chase on boxing day, are entitled to feel pleased with themselves as the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained grey is now as short as 5-1 for the three mile contest following the six-year-old’s demolition job in winning Saturday’s Betfair Chase by the astonishing distance of 57 lengths.
Only that race’s sponsor are currently out on a limb in offering 8-1 about the son of Saddler Maker claiming the second leg of the lucrative £1 million bonus for any horse winning the Betfair Chase, King George and Cheltenham Gold Cup in the 2017/18 national hunt season, a price considered far too big by Anthony Bromley, racing manager to the grey’s owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede.
Speaking in the aftermath of Bristol De Mai’s dominant display in beating three Grade 1 winners at the Lancashire venue in Cue Card, Outlander and Tea For Two, Bromley said: “ I think he goes there with every chance – he’s only six, getting stronger and on the upgrade, and 8-1 might be made to look big odds. If it was three and a half miles round Kempton it might be easier for him but I don’t think he’s ground-dependent as he’s run good races on better ground.”
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After winning all of his three starts at Haydock by an aggregate of 111 lengths Bristol De Mai is now, possibly unfairly, being labelled as a one-trick pony who can only show that kind of brilliance on that flat track combined with testing conditions. It is easy to see why that theory exists as the horse suffered comprehensive defeats in the Gold Cup and Betfair Bowl last season although there was a genuine excuse for those under-par performances following a rushed preparation due to injuring a fetlock at Newbury just over a month before the Cheltenham Festival.
If you are willing to take Bristol De Mai’s performance in Saturday’s Betfair Chase at face value, and there is no reason not to, the mount of a suitably impressed Daryl Jacob deserves to be disputing favouritism with Might Bite and the returning from injury Thistlecrack for the King George. The decision of the Betfair traders to go 8-1 about the gelding may come back to haunt them in a month’s time.