Boylesports Grand Sefton At Aintree – Broken Halo Backed In To Favourite
Paul Nicholls is confident that Broken Halo has the tools to be a threat over the iconic Grand National fences in Saturday’s Boylesports Best Odds Guaranteed On Racing Grand Sefton Handicap Chase at Aintree.
The seven-year-old enjoyed a progressive novice campaign last year winning twice from five starts and looked a chaser on the up when signing off with a 17-length victory at Fontwell back in March.
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Broken Halo is one of 21 entries going forward for the first of five races over the Grand National fences this season and Nicholls revealed that he was keen to run provided that conditions remain on the slow side for his charge, who is currently the 5-1 Favourite with BoyleSports for the £100,000 contest.
The 13-time champion Jump trainer said: “He will likely run as long as it keeps on raining and the ground is on the slow side. He is in really good shape and he’s a good jumper, Lorcan (Williams, jockey) is very confident that he’ll be good around there and it was his idea to go for this really, so hopefully things go well for us on Saturday.
“We’ve made a very good start to the campaign and the horses are going well, so we’re very happy.”
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This is the first year that the race will be supported by Boylesports and the list of entries for Saturday’s two mile five furlong contest is an excellent one, featuring no less than the 2019 Betfair Chase hero Lostintranslation (15/2) as well as smart performers Two For Gold (8/1), Al Dancer (10/1) and Senior Citizen (10/1) – who finished runner-up to Mac Tottie 12 months ago and is set to make his fifth appearance over the Grand National fences.
Senior Citizen’s trainer Alan King said: “He seems to love the Aintree fences and the only time he sees them is at the racecourse as we don’t school him over them at home. He was outpaced in the Topham then he stayed on again. I don’t see any reason why he can’t perform over them again.”
Another lively chance in the betting at the time of writing is the Stuart Coltherd-trained Cooper’s Cross (12/1), who impressed when winning by seven and a half lengths on return at Carlisle over two and a half miles earlier this month.
Cooper’s Cross has been steadily heading in the right direction over fences for Coltherd, who revealed that the Sefton had been the plan for his charge for some time.
He said: “It all went well for him at Carlisle first time out and it’s always been the plan for him this year to go to Aintree for the Grand Sefton. When Jimmy Fyffe bought the horse he was keen to try and go for this race, so we’ve had it in mind for a while.
“It’s been so far so good with him and I’d like to think that he’ll handle the fences at Aintree. He’s always been pretty foot perfect at home and he’s been pretty good on the track as well so fingers crossed he handles them. He’s going the right way and we’re looking forward to Saturday.”
Leon Blanche, Head of Communications for BoyleSports, said: “Broken Halo has been a significant mover in the antepost betting at 5/1 favourite from 10/1, but there are some very strong challengers enjoying their fair share of early support too. It’s going to be a stellar line-up in the BoyleSports Grand Sefton and needless to say we’re looking forward to a thrilling contest over those famous Grand National fences.”
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