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Paul Nicholls to target Ryanair Chase with Rolling Aces

Paul Nicholls is eyeing a tilt at the Ryanair Chase with Rolling Aces at the Cheltenham Festival after admitting his charge had his stamina limitations exposed over a longer trip at Sandown last time.

The eight-year-old landed a point-to-point in Ireland and a Wincanton novice hurdle in his younger days but always looked the type to thrive over fences and really began to make progress when put over the bigger obstacles last season.

Wins at Newbury and Wincanton earned Rolling Aces a step up in class and he held his own in top-notch company when finishing second to Opening Batsman in the valuable Racing Plus Chase at Kempton.

The gelding remained on an upward curve at the start of this campaign when beating Toner D'Oudairies and Texas Jack in the Grade 2 Powers Irish Whiskey Chase at Down Royal but just failed to last home when second to Vino Griego in the Future Stars Chase over 3m 1f at Sandown last time out.

"He had a good season as a novice last year and just got beat in the Racing Plus Chase," said Nicholls on his latest Betfair video blog. "He started this season off very well at Down Royal, winning over two and a half miles, then went to Sandown for the intermediate chase over three and I don't think he really got the trip. I think the middle distance is ideal for him, so he's going to run in the Betfair Ascot Chase, which is 2m 5f, and then aim him for the Ryanair Chase."

The Ditcheat handler sent out two of the first three winners of the Ryanair Chase when successful with Thisthatandtother in 2005 and Taranis two years later.


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Paul Nicholls to target Ryanair Chase with Rolling Aces

Paul Nicholls is eyeing a tilt at the Ryanair Chase with Rolling Aces at the Cheltenham Festival after admitting his charge had his stamina limitations exposed over a longer trip at Sandown last time.

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