Ground to Determine Broughton Entry

Aiming to ensure no meeting between his two star novice chasers Dodging Bullets and Taquin Du Seuil again, owner Sir Martin Broughton is experiencing a headache in regards to which runner to enter on account of unsure ground at Sandown.

Broughton is keen to unleash the exciting Jonjo O’Neill-trained Taquin Du Seuil for Saturday’s Grade 1 Henry VIII Novices’ Chase, however the reasonable prospect of unsuitable ground conditions could very well see the entry of the Paul Nicholls-trained Dodging Bullets instead.

Sitting among a field of nine entries for Saturday’s classic, both chasers claimed victory at Cheltenham’s Open meeting; Dodging Bullets taking out a Grade 2 prize over 2 miles and Taquin Du Seuil landing a victory over 2m4f.

“The idea was for Taquin to run but he particularly likes soft going, which at this time of year we thought Sandown would have. However, it now looks like the chase course will be good, or even the firmish side of good” Broughton told racingpost.com recently.

“We’ve entered Dodging because we wouldn’t want to risk Taquin on anything with even a hint of firm in it. On the other hand, Dodging likes that sort of going.

“This time Taquin has first call. If Jonjo is happy to run Taquin that’s what we’ll do, but if he’s in any way worried about the going we’ll run dodging.”

Sandown’s Clerk of the course Andrew Cooper highlighted the course as good on Tuesday, good to soft over the hurdles course.

“It wouldn’t take long for the ground to get to the fast side of good on the chase course, but we also had a very wet first half of November and any rain would soften the ground quite quickly” Cooper said.

“At this stage, I would be expecting good ground on the chase course and good to soft on the hurdles course.”

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