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Our man Dan Skelton discusses his runners this weekend

| 24.11.2017

We start the weekend with Gortroe Joe running in the 12.10 at Haydock.

He ran nicely behind Slate House at Cheltenham last time and it was his first hurdle run for us.

I think he will handle the ground but it’s a competitive novice and he’ll definitely go further in time.

Born Survivor runs in the 13.15 at Haydock and we are really happy with him. Again, it’s another very tight race.

Paul Nicholls’ has got a good horse in there with Clan Des Obeaux, who was second to Whisper last time.

He’s got to give us weight though. We are trying this trip as we are all sure he’s more than a two-miler.

We started off over two miles last time as it was the route of least resistance.

He likes soft ground and this race will be a good indicator as to what we will do next. It’s only his second run over fences so at the same time as being a big ask, we think he’s a good horse.

Value At Risk runs in the 13.50 at Haydock. He ran the other day at Aintree and he’s got a chance in this race if that form behind Uknowwhatimeanharry is read literally.

That run was a good step in the right direction and We have actually gave him a wind operation over the summer, which was a last ditch attempt to relight the fire.

He wasn’t making any noises but we felt we had to do something. It seems to have relighted the fire a bit but we need to go and see that run at Aintree backed up now.

In the 14.25 at Haydock, I run both Three Musketeers and No Hassle Hoff. Three Musketeers won a grade two hurdle and a grade two novice chase.

I think he’ll like the ground. He’s got a nice weight in this but it’s very, very competitive. I was happy with his run at Aintree but I wasn’t saying wow, that’s him back to his best.

I still think we have got a way to go to find him at his best but at least things are going in the right direction.

Harry will ride No Hassle Hoff, who comes here with a great chance. He won last time out and is prominent in the betting for this race.

He ran well around here as a novice but as I said it’s very competitive.

Unfortunately his owner Jacky Allen died last night which is terribly sad. She has been a supporter of ours since we started and if he can win this for her it would be very emotional.

At Huntingdon, Buckby Boy runs in the 13.05. He was a little bit better over hurdles last time but I still think we are a long way from the finished article.

I think he’s going to need more time. I thought he would be a bit more forward than he is but he can still run OK.

I’m not going to bang the drum and say I think he will be winning or anything like that tomorrow.

Holryale runs in the 13.40 at Huntingdon. I think he’s got a chance in this. It’s his first time with the tongue strap and I think he will be competitive.

He’s not exactly ten pound well in but he’s ok handicapped. I think he’s got to have a good chance.


Beast Of Burden runs in 14.45 at Uttoxeter. On old form he’d be in a different league…

He went three out of four on his first four starts and looked like he was going to go and raise in grade very quickly but he lost his way.

We are just going to see if we can get the fire to burn again. His owner Carl Hinchy said do your best and see how you get on.

I think three miles is fine and not travelling him to far from home is ideal, so hopefully we have got him in a race where he can be competitive.

I’d love to see him come back to what he looked capable of!




Dan Skelton

Since starting out on his own, Warwickshire trainer Dan Skelton has assembled one of the most exciting stables in National Hunt racing. Having enjoyed their first Cheltenham Festival success with Superb Story in 2016, Skelton and the team are hungry for more. Get the latest from the Lodge Hill maestro exclusively at Ladbrokes News.