The last Saturday before Christmas & the betting would suggest Christmas dinner was on Zarkandar, who was backed off the board to take the JLT long walk. Zarkandar was last seen running out an impressive 5 length victory at Auteuil, beating a good horse in Gemix on home soil. Reve de Sivola was also beaten into 7th in that race, but looked to turn the tables on Zarkander in a race he has form in, winning the previous two runnings. Reve de Sivola led the field but made a blunder over the third. Daryl Jacob did well to regain, but cost him some momentum . Zarkandar travelled sweetly throughout & appeared to have most of the work done, passing Reve de Sivola over the last. Sam Twiston-Davies hit the front, but Zarkandar wouldn't pick up. Jacob took his chance & battled back to beat Nicholls' odds-on shot by a head.
The Young Master was out to set the record straight after being disqualified last time out, for failing to meet race requirements. Hiked up 14lb for that performance, trainer Mulholland said he was more confident this time round despite the stone rise. Barry Geraghty guided his mount well. Although occasionally jumping slightly left, it wasn't enough to hinder the 5 year old who went 3 lengths clear coming over the second from home. Houblon Des Obeaux finished strongly under Aiden Coleman but wasn't enough to catch Mulholland's impressive chaser.