Doncaster date: Mo Celita ‘looks a million dollars’ as Adrian Nicholls looks forward to new Flat season

ADRIAN Nicholls’s stable star Mo Celita could make her seasonal reappearance in the SBK Cammidge Trophy at Doncaster on Saturday.

This was the Adrian Nicholls-trained Mo Celita winning at Beverley last May.
This was the Adrian Nicholls-trained Mo Celita winning at Beverley last May.

The Camacho filly enjoyed a fairytale rise through the sprinting ranks last season, progressing from a hat-trick of selling race wins to being beaten just over five lengths in the Prix de l’Abbaye.

In all she won six times in 2021, including a Listed success in France during the summer, and Nicholls is pleased with her condition ahead of an imminent return to action.

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The Thirsk trainer said: “She’s entered at Doncaster and she’s got an entry in France at Fontainebleau on Monday. We’ll see what the ground does and go from there.

Edwardstone and Tom Cannon are on course for Aintree's Grand National meeting after winning the Sporting Life Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices' Chase during day one of the Cheltenham Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse.

“She’s ready to run and physically she’s done marvellously well over the winter. Her muscle tone is fantastic and she looks a million dollars.

“She’s really furnished into a proper looking sprinter.

“Being a Listed winner, she’s got to step up into those big races and that’s what she’ll be going for.

“It would be lovely if she can get that Group-race win for her breeding. I think she will.”

Becher Chase winner Snow Leopardess is now guaranteed a place in the Randox Grand National field.

Nicholls is also set to be representing in the curtain-raising SBK Brocklesby Stakes, with Massaat colt Mascapone confirmed an intended runner in the five-furlong contest for unraced juveniles.

“He’s a big boy and doing everything right,” Nicholls added. “He’s as forward as I can get him and everything I’ve asked of him he’s done very well, so this will be a good marker for the rest of the two-year-olds.

“We’ve got about nine two-year-olds in at the moment and he would be one of the more forward ones.

“It’s the same thing going to Doncaster every year. Everyone goes there with all their ideas, but there’ll be a few bubbles burst and there’ll be a few people dreaming.”

Meanwhile, Arkle hero Edwardstone could bid to crown his excellent campaign with victory at next month’s Randox Grand National meeting at Aintree.

Alan King’s stable star is unbeaten in his last five starts, culminating in an impressive victory at last week’s Cheltenham Festival under Tom Cannon.

King reports his eight-year-old to have taken his exertions well and the Maghull Novices’ Chase on Grand National day (April 9) could be next on the agenda.

“Edwardstone is absolutely fine,” he reported.

King added: “I had a quick meeting with the owners at Southwell on Monday and the plan is to go to Aintree, as long as we’re happy with him.”

Becher Chase winner Snow Leopardess is guaranteed a run in next month’s Randox Grand National at Aintree after moving up to 38th in the weights.

The Charlie Longsdon-trained mare is a leading contender for the £1m race after winning the Becher last November over the world famous Aintree fences.

However her participation in the 40-runner race depends on soft ground.

The same applies to Yorkshire’s sole remaining entrant Top Ville Ben who fell heavily in the Becher under Tommy Dowson. Though Top Ville Ben is 29th in the handicap, and assured of his place in the line-up, Catterick trainer Phil Kirby says the horse will only run if conditions are testing.

Last year’s Scottish National winner Mighty Thunder and Cloth Cap, who was pulled up in last year’s National when 
favourite, also make the cut following the defection of 14 horses.

Group One-winning trainer Jamie Osborne, former trainer Mick Quinn and TV presenter Matt Chapman are among the seven team managers for the 2022 Racing League.

Osborne will lead Wales and the West, Quinn The North and Chapman London and the South, with Kevin Blake (Ireland), Linda Perratt (Scotland), Rupert Bell (The East) and Leonna 
Mayor (Yorkshire) other team leaders.

Over £2m is up for grabs over six meetings, all to be broadcast live on Sky Sports Racing and 
ITV.