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Another big handicap scalp for Naunton maestro Twiston-Davies

17-March-2024 10:54
in General
by Peter McNeile

A dearth of Gloucetsershire success at the Festival met with some compensation at a wet Uttoxeter yesterday when Beauport slogged it out to a hard-won victory in the 4m Midlands Grand National for the Twiston-Davies.

However, it was Jordan Nailor that kept the ride for the £150,000 chase rather than stable jockey Sam Twiston-Davies, scoring the biggest success of his career to date. The last form of worth from Beauport was a 1 1/4l second in the London National at Sandown in December.

The Twiston-Davies yard has been among the top performers for over 25 years. The yard buys cleverly because in today's world, where the best bloodstock changes hands for £1/4m or more, the owners supporting Nigel are rarely in that spending bracket. The family affair that is Nigel, Willie and Sam, has rarely attracted the bigger spenders, but they certainly know how to prepare handicappers to carry off some of the big prizes.

In the Hollow Bottom pub in Guiting Power, once owned by Nigel with close friend Kim Bailey, images of a memorable win by Tipping Tim in the then titled Mackeson Gold Cup (now Paddy Power) at Cheltenham's November fixture in 1992, hark back to a time when the Twiston-Davies yard identified with winning big handicaps before the major players had really wound up their big battalions. He has a penchant for long distance staying chases, as illustrated by scalps in the Scottish Grand NAtional (Earth Summit 1994, Hello Bud 2009, ), Peter Marsh Chase (Earth Summit 1995, Bristol de Mai 2017),Rehearsal (Grange Brake 1995) Welsh National (Earth Summit 1997,Bindaree 2003) Becher Chase (Earth Summit 1998, Hello Bud 2010)Great Yorkshire Chase (Beau 1990),Whitbread (now Bet 365) Gold Cup (Beau 1990)Hennessy (now Ladbrokes) Trophy (Kings Road 2000) and a previous Midlands Grand National (Baron Windrush 1997).

That is not to say this is a yard on the wane: quite the reverse. At just light of £1m in prize money earnings, the yard is in the top 10, and positive results at Aintree have the ability to move the dial significantly, as his two Grand Nationals with Earth Summit and Bindaree will attest.


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