Escaria Ten camp pondering second bid at Thyestes Chase

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The eight-year-old was making his first start of last season when contesting the Thyestes at Gowran Park in January and a lack of fitness told in the closing stages, with Gordon Elliott's charge fading into eighth place.

However, with the benefit of a run under his belt this time around following a two-length second in Listed company, it is hoped he could mount a bolder bid if taking his chance once more in Gowran's prestigious handicap on January 26. The Coral Welsh Grand National at Chepstow, which takes place on December 27, is a possible alternative, though. "He has come out of his race at Thurles fine and he could come over for the Welsh National, but he also has the option of going for the Thyestes," said Iain Turner, racing manager for Escaria Ten's owners the McNeill Family. "We felt in the Thyestes earlier this year the ground was quicker than normal at Gowran, which didn't suit him, and he didn't have the benefit of a run. He was sort of in top gear and he had to be almost pushed along to get involved. He came up to the top bend going nicely but those efforts took their toll. "So, the plan was always to get a run into him early this season and the Thurles race was perfect. We were all really happy with how that race went up against a race-fit rival and over a trip that was probably shorter than ideal. We were very happy with how he ran." Escaria Ten is one of three McNeill Family-owned horses among the initial entries for the Welsh National alongside Threeunderthrufive and The Wolf. Although no final decision has been made, ground conditions in Monmouthshire could rule Escaria Ten out of boarding the ferry. Turner added: "At the time the entries came out we thought we would put him in just in case. It would be quite nice to have one in the Welsh National, but we will just have to play that one by ear. "The feedback from the lads who rode there on Saturday was that the ground is pretty quick at Chepstow and while you wouldn't be worried about that for Threeunderthrufive, you probably wouldn't want to bring Escaria over for it - he's definitely better with a bit of cushion. "If it was to get wet we would consider it, but it would be a decision for the five-day stage."

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