KEITH Reveley fears Benny Be Good may have ruled himself out of a tilt at next month’s Sky Bet Chase at Doncaster after a magnificent weight-carrying performance at the track on Saturday.
The eight-year-old, ridden by the trainer’s son and carrying top weight, was caught on the line by the fast finishing Qianshan Leader in a three-mile handicap and Reveley had been eyeing the Sky Bet – formerly the Great Yorkshire Chase – which runs on January 28.
It was another bold riding performance by Reveley junior who recorded a double at Catterick yesterday.
But his father is now concerned how the handicapper will react to Benny Be Good’s latest run.
“He ran out of his skin again and the first two pulled a long way clear,” said Saltburn-based Reveley.
“He was giving the winner nearly two stone so it was a really good effort and the horse has just kept on improving.
“It’s amazing what a bit of confidence does.
“He likes a flat, galloping track and I had hoped to go back to Doncaster for the Great Yorkshire Chase at the end of January.
“The worry is now he won’t get in as he ran off 150 on Saturday and the Great Yorkshire is 0-155, so we’ll have to see what the handicapper does.
“Looking further ahead he could be one for the Scottish National if it was decent ground.”
Reveley also revealed plans for Eyre Square, recent winner of the Borders National at Kelso.
“I was delighted with him as he got into a lovely rhythm and the extended trip has obviously helped him as well,” the trainer added. “The Eider would be the obvious place to go with him and he might have a run or two beforehand.”
n Paul Webber is hopeful stable star Time For Rupert can get back to winning ways at Newbury tomorrow.
The seven-year-old was one of last season’s leading novice chasers in the staying division and his comeback second in the Charlie Hall at Wetherby offered plenty of promise.
He failed to get competitive behind Kauto Star and Long Run in last month’s Betfair Chase at Haydock, however, and takes a significant drop in class for his next start.
For the first time, Denis O’Regan takes over in the saddle from Will Kennedy.
n Lord Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to Frankel’s owner Prince Khalid Abdullah, is the new chairman of York Racecourse.
The appointment was confirmed at last night’s Gimcrack Speech which was delivered by Charles Wentworth whose Caspar Netscher won the Gimcrack Stakes earlier this year.
Wentworth used his platform to criticise terrestrial television coverage of racing, saying: “One channel is obsessed with clothing and hats and the other whether any given horse is 9/4 or 85/40.
“Surely the racing programmes are at their best when they tell the story of the raceday allied to the horse-to-human connection.”