Ghizao heads to Haldon
Nicholls chaser given Exeter aim
Last Updated: 25/10/11 2:22pm
Ghizao (L) chasing home Finian's Rainbow
Promising chaser Ghizao will run in next Tuesday's Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter as long as the ground is suitable.
Paul Nicholls' seven-year-old was last seen finishing second to Finian's Rainbow at Aintree in the spring and the Arkle fifth, owned by the families of Andy Stewart and David Johnson, is on target to reappear next week.
Speaking to At The Races, Nicholls said: "He'll run in the Haldon Gold Cup if it keeps raining as we've decided to start him off in a handicap.
"He's in good order but we've got to get his jumping better because he was a bit lax at the end of last year and he seemed to lose his confidence.
"I think a fast-run two miles is best for him - I did have him entered in the Paddy Power Gold Cup over two and a half miles but I just feel like it's a bit far for him."
Nicholls also provided bulletins on Cheltenham Festival winners Al Ferof and Zarkandar.
Supreme Novices' winner Al Ferof goes over fences this season and is on target for a fascinating clash with fellow Festival winner Peddlers Cross next month.
"He goes to Bangor and will take on Peddlers Cross," explained Nicholls.
"We'll leave plenty to work on, and he'll improve as the season goes on but it's a nice track to run novice chasers at and we're looking forward to getting him running.
"We're in no hurry with Zarkandar. The best races for him are in the spring and so you might not see him until Boxing Day and the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton."
The Ditcheat handler also gave updates on two other young horses in the yard, Sam Winner and Hinterland.
The former was fourth in the Triumph Hurdle but subsequently disappointed at Aintree, whilst the latter is an exciting three-year-old recruit from the French yard of Guillame Macaire.
"Sam Winner has an entry at Ascot but will go to Exeter if it goes on raining whilst Hinterland is a lovely individual and he'll run at the Paddy Power meeting in the race (JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial) that Sam Winner won last year," explained Nicholls.