Staged during one of Newton Abbot’s changeable autumn fixtures, their Novices’ Chase over the extended two miles is an attractive early-season Class 3 affair. The race carries a total prize fund of around £13,000 and challenges runners with 13 fences on the way around.
While very soft ground can be a concern at Newton Abbot, often leading to this race featuring only small fields, it is well supported in terms of the quality of horsemen who like to get involved with it. Its place in the schedule means that it is seen as ideal prep for those looking to creep towards a spot at the Cheltenham Festival the following March, perhaps even in the Arkle Trophy.
Paul Nicholls’ Mont Des Avaloirs, who was beaten in this race in 2018 with only two rivals to beat, actually went on to compete in no less than five graded races thereafter, culminating in a second-place finish in the Grade 2 Noel Novices’ Chase at Ascot which shows the quality this race can attract.