Al Ferof looks like one of the leading contenders for the 2013 King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.
Al Ferof has been cut from 10/1 to 8/1 for Kempton’s King George VI Chase on Boxing Day following an impressive reappearance at Ascot.
Winning the Amlin 1965 Chase, albeit against only one other opponent, the Paul Nicholls-trained grey displayed speed, stamina and effortless technique to trounce French Opera by eight lengths and land the Grade Two affair.
The outing represented a successful comeback for a charge who missed the majority of the previous season with a leg injury.
And given his latest performance many onlookers, including Ladbrokes, have been forced to reassess the eight-year-old’s chances of achieving a famous score in Surrey.
Nicholls has already won the King George a record seven times and in Al Ferof and Silviniaco Conti, a 6/1 King George chance following his recent third in the Betfair Chase, the Ditcheat handler has a potentially strong double hand for the upcoming renewal.
Cue Card is the new 5/2 favourite after leading from the front to land the Haydock showpiece ahead of Dynaste and Silviniaco Conti with Joe Tizzard’s mount now confirmed to stay the distance that he struggled with last year when finishing a weary fifth.
Cue Card is the favourite for the King George. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)
But it’s Al Ferof’s latest victory, complete with bold jumping and plenty to spare, that has the racing world pondering whether he can make a successful step up in trip.
There’s no doubt that the Amlin represented a fine work-out and suitable preparation for the King George, even with a severely limited field to challenge.
A first attempt at three miles since running in amateur events back in 2009 will be a concern for some.
However, conditions at Kempton should suit a horse who travels effortlessly while possessing a jumping style that’s usually marked by precision.
In that regard there’s a case to be made for Al Ferof being overpriced. But that shouldn’t concern those savvy enough to snap up the value pick for however long the current odds are available.