Nicholls has RSA in mind for Copper

Mon 13th Nov 2017, 17:32

photoGive Me A Copper pictured on his way to victory at Cork in March of 2016
©Healy Racing Photos
Give Me A Copper, who won a point-to-point and bumper for Donal Coffey before joining Paul Nicholls, could head down a path that leads to the Cheltenham Festival after breaking his duck over fences at Kempton.

The 1/3 favourite parted company with Sean Bowen on his chasing debut but saw off sole rival Three Ways by three and a quarter lengths in the Follow At BetVictorRacing On Twitter Novices' Chase in the hands of Harry Cobden.

Nicholls said afterwards: "He could conceivably be an RSA horse. I half had in mind going to Doncaster for the Grade Two (December Novices' Chase) that Present Man won up there. Harry was impressed with him."

Nicky Henderson took the graduation chase with Whisper, having earlier landed the John and Josie Celebration Novices' Hurdle with Mr Whipped, who won a point-to-point at Lingstown for Denis Murphy in March.

The 2-9 favourite struck by four and a half lengths under Nico de Boinville, and Henderson said: "He is not a two-miler and he is not a hurdler, but on the other hand he has got to do something for the year."

Bags Groove (2-1) booked his ticket to next year's Festival in staying on strongly to take the Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle by a length and a quarter.

Winning trainer Harry Fry said: "I said to Noel Fehily coming in 'I hope it was more enjoyable there than watching in the stands'.

"He took a while to get into top gear, but he got there in the end. We came here to get the Pertemps qualifier in the bag and that gives us an option in the spring."

Ben Pauling hopes Way Back Then (9-2) will be competing at the top table later in the season after the six-year-old made a winning return when taking the BetVictor Golden Goal Novices' Hurdle by three-quarters of a length.

He said: "Daryl (Jacob) said with a lead he was great and as soon as he was left in front he was just having a look. I'd like to think he will feature in some decent races in the spring."

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THE IRISH TIMES