The Queen Mother Champion Chase is a race only for the absolute cream of two-mile chasers. Our current crop of two milers is particularly strong which means space at the top is at a premium. Two horses looking to establish themselves as contenders for the Cheltenham showpiece are clashing at Prestbury Park on Sunday. Edwardstone and Nube Negra are the horses in question and only the victor can have realistic claims in March so the winner takes it all. We’ve outlined both horses credentials and selected our winner. Check out our free tips page for daily content across British and Irish racing.
Alan King’s charge was a revelation over fences last season, becoming 12lb better chaser than he was a hurdler. He was aggressively campaigned, running in (and winning) most of the top two-mile novice chases. Victory in the Arkle over course and distance in March was well-deserved, establishing him as the top two-mile novice chaser. May well have been over the top after a hard season when running a bit flat behind Gentleman De Mee at Aintree next time.
Dan Skelton’s gelding burst onto the scene with a comfortable defeat of Altior at Kempton in December 2020. He went on to narrowly be defeated in a weak renewal of the Champion Chase in 2021 won by Put The Kettle On. Impressive in this race last year, he hasn’t been seen since disappointing twice behind Greaneteen in the Tingle Creek and Celebration Chase. Seems to save his best for Cheltenham which bodes well for his chances here.
Edwardstone has the most scope for progression as he heads into open graded company for the first time over fences. A nice summer break will have revitalised him and he should be fresh and raring to go. Nube Negra can perhaps flatter to deceive at times and isn’t the most consistent despite being capable of brilliance on his day. Consistency is key and Edwardstone proved last season that he has it in abundance.
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