‘We have set out to try to win this race’: Trainer Paul Nicholls has high hopes for Clan Des Obeaux in the Betfair Chase at Haydock
- Clan Des Obeaux is third in the betting for Saturday’s Betfair Chase at Haydock
- Heading the market at 5-4 is the Colin Tizzard-trained winner Lostintranslation
- Nigel Twiston-Davies’ Bristol de Mai, winner in 2017 and 2018, is a 7-4 chance
Sam Twiston-Davies rides Paul Nicholls-trained Clan Des Obeaux in Saturday’s Betfair Chase at Haydock with a view to maintaining the partnership in the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.
It means there should be no difficult Festive decision for Harry Cobden, Nicholls’ No 1 jockey, with him committed to partnering Charlie Hall Chase winner Cyrname in the King George.
Cobden partnered Clan Des Obeaux to win the 2018 King George VI Chase but chose Cyrname last season and had to watch as his Twiston-Davies-partnered stablemate lifted the big Christmas prize for the second year running.
Sam Twiston-Davies will ride Clan Des Obeaux in Saturday’s Betfair Chase at Haydock
Nicholls said: ‘Cyrname was good in the Charlie Hall and he will be a different horse going into the King George compared to last year.
‘Sam won the King George on Clan so will stick with him. It saves messing about and having to make decisions.’
Five runners have been declared for the Betfair Chase and, at 3-1, Clan Des Obeaux is third in the betting. Heading the market at 5-4 is last year’s Colin Tizzard-trained winner Lostintranslation while Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Bristol de Mai, the winner in 2017 and 2018, is a 7-4 chance.
But Nicholls said: ‘Clan Des Obeaux ran in the race two years ago (when fourth to Bristol de Mai) and wasn’t fully wound up. I wanted to see if he was good enough to be a King George horse. This time he will be ready.
‘He is probably at his peak now. He is a lot more athletic and stronger. We have set out to try to win this race, not just go there as a prep run for the King George.’
Cobden will ride at Ascot on Saturday. His mounts include Real Steel and Laurina, two close-season Nicholls recruits from the Willie Mullins stable.