Skip to main content Skip to site footer


Article 9th November 2022 Huntingdon

By Graham Clark

Ben Pauling is already dreaming of a return to Aintree in the spring for Cheltenham Festival hero Le Breuil after he demonstrated he still has plenty to offer campaigned at the right level on his return to action at Huntingdon today.

While the 10 year old might not be the force of old he proved a cut above his three rivals in the M1 Agency Conditional Jockeys; Veterans’ Handicap Chase to make it three wins from as many visits to the Cambridgeshire track.

Appearing to have every move covered throughout the extended two miles and seven furlongs contest the 8-13 Favourite, who claimed victory in the 2019 National Hunt Chase at The Festival™, strolled to victory by nine lengths under Luca Morgan.

All roads will now lead back to a fourth outing over the famous Grand National fences in April for Le Breuil for a second tilt at the Randox Foxhunters’ Chase, which he finished fourth in last season.

Pauling said: “It is brilliant. He is in the twilight of his career but Emma (Palmer, owner) keeps re-assuring me he is a spring chicken. This was the right race and these conditions work well for him as he would not be up to running in an open veterans chase. 

“If I’m honest he looks a little bit better than last season. It is just good with these old timers to get their head in front every now and then and see them back in the winner’s enclosure as it means so much to everyone. 

“He has given us some fantastic days but he is not the force of old but if we can pick up a race or two then we will keep going. We might go back to the Foxhunters’ (at Aintree) in April. 

“He got left at the start in this year’s race and lost 20 lengths but still managed to finish fourth. He is very good over those fences and that is probably where will end up.”

Owner Marytn Royston Davis admitted he was ‘over the moon’ after enjoying a day to remember when watching his silks carried to glory for the first time by William Cody in the Weatherbys Novices’ Handicap Chase. 

Putting in a near foot perfect round of jumping the 2-1 chance, who is trained in nearby Thorney by Pam Sly, pulled out plenty late on under Paul O’Brien to defeat Thundersockssundae by eight lengths to go one better than on his chasing debut at Market Rasen. 

Davis said: “This is the first horse that I have owned outright. It was brilliant seeing him win. I was hoping he might get second but he jumped like a stag. I’m over the moon. It is a lovely experience. 

“I honestly didn’t know he would get on and you are always filled with trepidation. He jumped the last two brilliantly and on the run in he skated away which I was not expecting.”

Connections of the Nicky Henderson-trained Impulsive One (3-1) praised officials at the track for the prize-money on offer after he opened his account for the campaign in the feature Weatherbys & Birdie Calendars Michaelmas Handicap Hurdle.

A winner on his previous visit to the course last October the Union Rags-gelding added to that tally when running out a comfortable four and three quarter length winner of the feature prize to initiate a 12-1 double for Daryl Jacob.

Anthony Bromley, racing manager to owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede, said: “He wants decent ground but he has come on for his first run.

“He won the Listed Scottish Triumph Hurdle last season but he also ran in some good juvenile hurdles where he was just found wanting and he also kept running into Knight Salute. 

“He was a bit keen in his early days but he really wants further now so I’m pleased he has coped with the two miles today.

“There are no big targets for him but I want to applaud Huntingdon for putting on good prize money at a midweek meeting.”

Grade One-winning rider Jacob completed his brace Kutaiba, who provided trainer Rae Guest with his first winner at the course in the Fillies’ “Junior” National Hunt Flat Race, which the 9-4 Joint-Favourite claimed by four and a quarter lengths.

Guest said: “She is bred to be a champion as she is by a Derby winner (Golden Horn) and out of a half-sister to Taghrooda. She was 16 3 when we got her but she is now 17 hands. We turned her out after we got in December and had her back in this summer.

“We saw this race so we thought we would have a go. We will try look for a Listed race with her now. That’s my first winner here but I’ve only had two or three runners.”

Lucy Wadham left Fakenham 25 days ago disappointed with East End Girl (3-1) on her jumps debut, however there were no such frustration on this occasion following her four and three quarter length win in the opening Weatherbys Stallion Book Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle. 

Wadham said: “She schools really well at home and it was disappointing how she jumped at Fakenham but it is a difficult track first time out for a novice.

“I thought Tom Cannon gave her a smashing ride as she was still a bit guessy at her hurdles.

“He took the race by the scruff of its neck off the home turn and she jumped the last two well. She is going the right way.”


Cookie Policy

We use “cookies” to help enhance your experience and improve the functionality of our website. You can find out more in our cookie policy. We also serve cookies, some with chocolate chips, on our racecourses.