Ascot Chase Tips: Fisher to enhance Ryanair claims with Grade 1 win

Mister Fisher

There's a hugely competitive renewal of the Grade 1 Ascot Chase taking place on Saturday afternoon, and the Ascot feature is set to throw up some vital clues for next month's Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival. Our man Steve Chambers previews the 2m 5f 8y contest here...

Runner-up to Allaho in the 2021 Ryanair Chase, Joseph O'Brien's Fakir D'Oudairies has been heavily supported by the punters since the five-day entries came out on Monday, and the Irish raider is now a clear 11/4 favourite for the contest, as he looks to record his second win of the season. An impressive 15-length romp in the Grade 2 Clonmel Oil Chase on his comeback outing, the JP McManus-owned raider failed to build on that effort and has been dispatched with limited fuss by the aforementioned Allaho, who looks a cut above his rivals in the 2m 5f division. A 12-length second in a Grade 2 at Thurles last time out, O'Brien's charge will need to recapture his best form, but he's shown he's a class act on his day, and he has to be a leading player here.

Nicky Henderson last won this race back in 2012 with Riverside Theatre, but the master of Seven Barrows will unleash a hugely talented chaser in the shape of MISTER FISHER, who is a second favourite with the bookmakers, but could be one that records a second win on the bounce. Pulled up in the King George over three miles, Mister Fisher then got the better of Eldorado Allen in the Grade 2 Silviniaco Conti Chase at Kempton over a shorter trip. That form has been well and truly franked with Eldorado Allen winning the Denman Chase last weekend, so while this contest has a lot more strength in depth that the Silviniaco Conti, Mister Fisher is a potentially top notch chaser, and he could be the one to side with.

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Of the octet taking their chance at Ascot this weekend, Saint Calvados is the shortest price in the Ryanair Chase betting, and should the Paul Nicholls-trained raider bring his A game to Berkshire on Saturday then he has to be a leading player. Last seen finishing third in the King George, Saint Calvados will drop back in trip, and the last time he ran over this distance he finished a gallant neck runner-up to Min in the 2020 Ryanair Chase, so a repeat here should see him be a factor.

Jeremy Scott's Dashel Drasher will attempt to emulate the abovementioned Riverside Theatre by winning back-to-back renewals of this event, as he was a two-length winner 12 months ago. However, Scott's stable star was last seen being beaten by Two For Gold at Lingfield Park, and that pair will do battle again here. It would be no shock to see Dashel Drasher reverse the form, as he had previously won over hurdles, so will come on for that return over fences, but ultimately both he and Two For Gold may lack the class and speed to deal with some of their rivals here.

A winner of the 1965 Chase over course and distance earlier in the season, Lostintranslation will look to emulate that effort here for the in-form yard of Colin Tizzard. However, this is a much tougher assignment, and as he looks to use this as a springboard to a possible tilt at the Cheltenham Gold Cup, he may just get tapped for toe here.

Completing the line-up will be the classy Fanion D'estruval, who is looking to hand Venetia Williams another notable winner this season, but he was beaten in a handicap chase at Ascot last time out, so is unlikely to be able to land a Grade 1 prize here, while Waiting Patiently finishes the eight-strong field, and he looks to be struggling to recapture his best form, and he's best watched here.

Ascot Chase
Mister Fisher silk

Mister Fisher

Cheltenham Festival 2022
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