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Giles Cross jumps into Midlands National picture.

Byline: Andrew King

GILES CROSS gained compensation for falling at the course last month with an almost foot-perfect display to land the 3m novice chase and earn a tilt at the Midlands National at Uttoxeter in March.

The Victor Dartnall-trained eight-yearold dictated matters in the testing conditions and showed plenty of resolution in the hands of Tom O'Brien to hold off Mobaasher by a length.

Kay Birchenough, representing the winning KCMS Partnership, said: "He was very unlucky to fall last time when still going nicely in front, so he deserved the better fortune and kept galloping all the way to the line."

Dartnall favours a crack at the Uttoxeter marathon with Giles Cross and said: "He jumps and stays, and ground conditions should be fine for him, so that's probably where we will go."

O'Brien completed a double when Notabotheronme, trained by his boss Philip Hobbs, maintained his consistent record at the Welsh course with a gutsy display in the 3m handicap chase.

Owner John Mutch was represented by his son Andrew, who said of the winner: "His record over fences here now reads 22141 and he has ground out success again, as he loves the place when the ground is testing."

David Pipe and Tom Scudamore could not be in better form and they kept the ball rolling with wins from Horsford in the 2m4f novice hurdle and Quinte Du Chatelet in the 2m4f handicap hurdle.

Horsford carried the well-known green and red colours of Brian Kilpatrick to a near all-the-way success over Pension Plan.

Pipe said: "The ground has helped him, as he cannot get it soft enough. The hope is that he will make up into a nice three-mile chaser in time, but we will be sticking to hurdles this season."

The fitting of cheekpieces have transformed the career of Callerlilly, and the Nigel Hawke-trained mare made all the running to take the 3m novice handicap hurdle by three and a half lengths from 5-2 favourite Raise You Five.

Jo Henley, of joint-owners Whitegate Stud, said: "We also bred her, which makes it special, and although she can be a bit quirky, the cheekpieces have definitely helped in recent runs."

Star performance Giles Cross showed no ill effects from his fall at the course last month as he won the novice chase Fixture clash With Newbury less than two hours away and also in action yesterday, just over 100 punters and four bookmakers turned up Which novice hurdler looks capable of breaking his duck in the near future? Results and analysis start page 94
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Jan 30, 2010
Words:427
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