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Kempton target for French star Il Est Francais

3 minute read

The Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices’ Chase at Kempton Park will be the target for French star Il Est Francais after his easy victory in the Listed Prix Fondeur Chase.

Racecourse : Kempton Park (Great Britain).
Racecourse : Kempton Park (Great Britain). Picture: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

It was a second chasing victory for the Noel George and Amanda Zetterholm-trained five year old, who was successful at Grade 1 level as a hurdler. 

Il Est Francais made all under a confident ride from regular jockey James Reveley, pulling ten lengths away from the field by the third-last fence. He maintained a similar lead all the way to the line, with Toscana Du Berlais finishing second. 

In an interview with Sky Sports Racing, Reveley said: "He did everything right today, he jumped perfect.

"The ground is pretty bottomless and he went through that, so he's done everything we've asked of him so far and next stop Kempton.

"At his age, he's up there with the best I've ridden and he's got everything that a champion needs to have.

"He's yet to prove it on the track in Grade One company over fences but I think he's capable of winning plenty more races."

Co-trainer Noel George said: He said: "It's never nice watching a horse when he's that short a price favourite and he had to do it all himself in front and everything, but watching him just makes it a lot easier, he just does everything so effortlessly.

"He's a very exciting horse. It was a first time over fences on ground that heavy and he's done it very well, so there's lots to look forward to.

"The sky's the limit with him and he adapts very well; from the first day he jumped fences he took to it like a duck to water, he's very natural in everything he does."

Paddy Power have shortened Il Est Francais to 16/1 from 25/1 for the Grade 1 Browns Advisory Novice Chase at the Festival. 

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