Turf Talk – Ms Parfois primed to deliver success in Midlands Grand National

anthony Honeyball hopes Ms Parfois can give his yard a much-needed boost with victory in today’s Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter.

Friday, 15th March 2019, 2:10 pm
Updated Friday, 15th March 2019, 2:13 pm
Ms Parfois (left) ridden by Aidan Coleman jumps with Al Reesha ridden by Harry Skelton on their way to victory in the 188bet.co.uk EBF Mares´ "National Hunt" Novices´ Hurdle at Warwick. Picture: David Davies/PA.

It has been a difficult season for the Dorset trainer after his stable was struck by a virus earlier in the campaign.

However, there have been shoots of recovery in recent weeks - with star bumper horse Acey Milan coming good over hurdles at Plumpton - and Ms Parfois has strong claims on her best form in today’s feature event.

The chestnut mare is a previous winner at the Staffordshire circuit, and rounded off last season with excellent efforts at Cheltenham and Aintree.

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She finished a well-beaten sixth on her only previous start of the current campaign, in the Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury, but Honeyball senses she is coming back to form.

He said: “At last she has got her ground, and we know the distance will be fine for her because she has got some good form over four miles.

“She will love the tempo of the race, and I’m just really looking forward to getting her out again. She ticks a lot of boxes in my opinion. We’ve got her as good as we can get her at this point of the season, and we feel we have got her somewhere near to being back on track.

“I’m very happy where we are now. She has got that little bit of class for a race like this, and I hope she can go close. You would like to think she is up to winning a race like this.”

Milansbar filled the runner-up spot in the marathon in 2016 and again 12 months ago. Trainer Neil King said: “He’s been top-weight the twice he has run in it, and he’s a long way off top-weight this time - which is a big plus,” said King. “He’ll love the ground and likes the track, so I hope he should run a big race.”