Will Singlefarmpayment Deliver Success at Ascot?

Source: BHAPressOffice via Twitter


Singlefarmpayment will be aiming to overcome his recent disappointment at the Ladbrokes Trophy Chase when he competes at the Lavazza Silver Cup Handicap Chase. The bay gelding has been a solid operator over the past two National Hunt seasons, although a major victory has eluded him.


Tom George’s charge has notched just three wins over the course of his career and will have to put forward an outstanding performance to triumph at Ascot. The seven-year-old is considered the favourite for the meet, despite suffering a fall in his last outing. Therefore, it will be worth monitoring Singlefarmpayment’s odds at Timeform along with the rest of the field before punting on the event.


The bay gelding had made his debut in the National Hunt in the 2014-15 campaign, but struggled in the early stages of his career. He placed sixth in his debut at Stratford before suffering a fall in his next outing at Exeter. Singlefarmpayment finally into gear with a strong performance at the Novices’ Hurdle at Southwell Racecourse, finishing second behind Irish horse Monbeg Theatre. The horse came within inches of his first victory at Chepstow in the National Hunt Novices’ Hurdle, but just lacked the closing speed down the stretch to beat out Sidbury Hill.


Singlefarmpayment failed to compete in his next two outings, but again came close to a breakthrough in the final meet of the campaign. The bay gelding challenged Fleet Dawn down the stretch at the Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber Of Commerce Handicap Hurdle, only to be beaten out by a length. His frustration continued at the start of the new term when he finished second in his debut at Ascot, on this occasion losing out to Masterplan, who upped the ante in the closing stages of the contest.


However, he finally notched his first win with jockey Richard Johnson in the saddle easing to a comfortable victory by seven lengths at the Novices’ Hurdle at Southwell Racecourse. Much like buses, his second triumph followed in the bay gelding’s next outing. Singlefarmpayment was considered the favourite for the Handicap Hurdle on his Cheltenham debut and did not disappoint by coming through the field at the precise moment to clinch the victory by three-and-half lengths.



Source: CheltCountdown via Twitter


The bay gelding took a step back by pulling up at Huntingdon to end his campaign, which would be the last with Tom Lacey as his trainer. He returned to action for the start of the 2016-17 season with George in place for his outing Richard Davis Memorial Chase, but struggled for pace down the stretch and could only finish in third. At Ascot, George’s charge came across Beware the Bear, and was made to rue a slow start as he made his surge too late to close the gap on the Irish horse.


Singlefarmpayment returned to Cheltenham at the beginning December and did not disappoint with a fine run to triumph in the Jockey Club Ownership Syndicate Novices’ Chase. Jockey Adrian Heskin timed the move to perfection to come through the pack and the bay gelding was able to close out the victory two-and-a-half lengths. George’s charge was considered the joint-favourite for the Novices’ Handicap Chase at Cheltenham at the end of January, only to be brought down at the 12th fence by More Buck’s.


As a result, the seven-year-old did not have the greatest preparation for Cheltenham Festival. However, he put forward a fine performance in the Handicap Chase, and he battled Un Temps Pour Tout all the way down the stretch to claim the win, but was just beaten out by a short head by the Irish horse. Singlefarmpayment made his fourth appearance on the bounce at Cheltenham to kick off the new term, but began the season slightly off the boil, finishing four lengths behind Cogry in the Handicap Chase.


George’s charge was making good headway in his last outing at Ladbrokes Trophy Chase, only to suffer the first fall of his career three fences from the end of the race. Momentum is not on his side heading into the Lavazza Silver Cup Handicap Chase, but has proven at the least that he can be competitive right until the end of the race. It’s an important meet for George and his charge and he may finally get over the line to secure his first major triumph at Ascot.


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