1. MASKUL (USA), 11 ž.Fuhrmann Dirk 67,0 Won the VP in 2002, was a close second to Registana in 2003 and came 4 th in 2004, behind Registana, Retriever and Decent Fellow. His best result in 4 starts this season is when he was 3 rd to Retriever and Kedon in the May qualifying race at Pardubice. At 11-y-o he seems to be past his best.＃短評を訳してる時間がありませんでしたので、原文のまま載せちゃいました。すみません……。
2. LUZCADOU (FR), 12 Mercer Keith 67,0
Has won 6 of his 43 races over fences, normally running in good company. Finished 3 rd behind Spotthedifference in the Sporting Index at Cheltenham in Nov 2004 in “Registana's race”, and was 2 nd in the cross-country race at the Cheltenham festival in 2005, also behind Spotthedifference. A serious contender.
3. KEDON, 10 ž.Myška Jaroslav 67,0
This popular grey has been a leading Czech cross-country chaser for years, but he lacks a bit of pace. His biggest success was his 3 rd place in the 2002 VP, behind Maskul and Decent Fellow. Won the First of May Chase at Lysa-nad-Labem in 2004. This year he finished 2 nd in the May qualifying race at Pardubice, behind Retriever, and 3 rd in the August qualifying race, behind Red Dancer and Odyseusz. Might get a place, especially if the going is soft.
4. NOSTALGIA (POL), 8 ž.Kameníček Jiří 65,0
This mare has won 9 of her 27 races, normally running in good company. She won the Vltava Prize on VP day in 2002. Has only run twice this year, finishing 3 rd to Registana and Decent Fellow in the June qualifying race at Pardubice, and then winning a small race in the August meeting at Pardubice. Could do well.
5. ASCOT (POL), 8 ž.Matysík Zdeněk 67,0
Has won only once in 27 races, and that was in a small race at Most in 2002. Has run 4 times this season, coming 2 nd in a Cat III race on May 7 th . Struggled home in 8 th place in the June qualifying race. Has very little chance.
6. DECENT FELLOW (GER), 10 ž.Bartoš 2 Josef 67,0
This globetrotter has run well at Cheltenham (in 2001), Merano, Baden Baden, Bremen, Waregem and many other places. Has won 5 Listed steeplechases, and has been placed in countless other major races. Finished 2 nd in the VP in 2002, 3 rd in 2003, and 3 rd in 2004 (just two weeks after finishing 4 th in the Grand Premio Merano). Has never beaten Registana, however, and came 2 nd to her in the June qualifying race in 2005. May be second best of the Czech challengers.
7. REGISTANA (GER), 9 Crowley James 65,0
Has won 17 of her 19 races since October 2001, including the VP in 2003 and in 2004. Nine of these wins were at Merano. Her only defeats in this run were in the Gran Premio Merano in 2002 and in the Sporting Index at Cheltenham in November 2004, when she went off course. In 2005 she won the June qualifying race at Pardubice, repeating her success in this race in 2003 and 2004, finishing ahead of Decent Fellow and Nostalgia. She also won at Merano in July and September. She has had a couple of minor setbacks in training this year, and in her wins she has perhaps not been at her brilliant best. This will probably be her final race, as she is to go into breeding this winter. She will be a hot favourite for the 2005 VP, and it is hard to see who might beat her.
8. BELOVODSK (UA), 13 Plzák Jiří 67,0
This 13-y-o was a leading VP horse a long time ago, finishing 3 rd to Peruan and Risk of Thunder in VP 1999, and 2 nd to Peruan in VP 2000. Missed the 2002 and 2003 seasons through injury, and has done nothing much since then. His 4 th place in the May qualifying race at Pardubice, behind Retriever, Kedon and Maskul was his best result this year. Would need to turn the clock back 5 years to have a chance.
9. LANERET, 9 Tůma 2 Pavel 67,0
Has won 2 of his 45 races, last succeeding in 2003, when he surprisingly won a Cat II race. This year, he fell in the May qualifying race at Pardubice, and was then a distant 6 th to Red Dancer in the August qualifying race. Has very little chance.
10. IRAKLION (POL), 10 ž.Havelka Radek 67,0
This good short-distance chaser has won 14 of his 42 races, including 4 Cat I races. Has won the Popler Memorial three times. His switch to long-distance cross-country races this season has not been a success so far. He was brought down in the May qualifying race at Pardubice, then finished 4 th to Registana, Decent Fellow and Maskul in the June qualifying race and then 4 th behind Red Dancer, Odyseusz, and Kedon in the August qualifying race. This does not appear to be a horse for the VP.
11. ODYSEUSZ (POL), 7 ž.Stromský Marek 67,0
Came to the Czech Republic from Poland for the 2005 season, after getting some good results at Merano in 2004. In three runs this year, he fell in the May qualifying race at Pardubice, then finished a close 2 nd behind Red Dancer in the August qualifying race. In the September meeting at Pardubice, he finished a long way behind in a small race. On his August form he might challenge for a place.
12. JACK DE TRAOU LAND (FR), 8 ž.Luka 2 Václav 67,0
Has won 6 of his 29 races, the best result being his Cat II win at Pardubice in June. He unseated his rider in the May qualifying race, and qualified at the last gasp in the September qualifying race, when he was a distant 5 th behind Hastaven. He has very little chance in a race of this quality.
13. JOINT AUTHORITY (IRE), 10 am.Horner Lucy 67,0
Has won 3 of his 30 races in the UK. Won a small race over 4400 metres at Fontwell in May, but has run poorly in his last three runs, at Stratford and at Le Touquet in June, and at Dieppe in July. Let us hope he gets round safely.
14. HASTAVEN (FR), 10 ž.Hurt Tomáš 67,0
Until 2003, he ran in oval track steeplechases with distinction. In 2004 he won 4 cross-country chases, including the August qualifying race, and was well fancied for the 2004 VP. However, he was pulled up with an injury in that race. Did not appear this season until the September qualifying race at Pardubice, which he won by a distance. He is among the best Czech-trained challengers.
15. CHAILAND, 8 Růžičková Martina 67,0
His best ever win was in a Cat III race at Lysa-nad-Labem in 2004. Was brought down in the May qualifying race this year, and finished a remote 7 th behind Registana, Decent Fellow and Nostalgia in the June qualifying race. This horse is a trier, but slow.
16. TAKAGI (IRE), 10 Maguire Jason 67,0
Has won 7 of his 39 races in Ireland, running in good class handicap steeplechases and cross-country races. Carried 10st. 11lb. in the 2004 Aintree Grand National, and was 4 th under top weight in the LaTouche Cup at Punchestown in 2004. Has not achieved much this year. Warmed up with 7 th place in a hurdles race at Listowel on September 22 nd . Could be a challenger.
17. RED DANCER (FR), 9 ž.Andrés Dušan 67,0
Has been a leading cross-country steeplechaser since 2002, when he ran in the Sporting Index at Cheltenham. Has won 7 of his 22 races, always running in good company. Was on the sidelines for almost two years before reappearing with a victory at Merano in August 2005. He then went on to win the August qualifying race at Pardubice, in a close finish with Odyseusz. Definitely a leading contender.
18. RETRIEVER (GER), 8 ž.Váňa 2 Josef 67,0
Finished 2 nd in the 2004 VP, behind Registana but in front of Decent Fellow and Maskul. Won the May 2005 qualifying race, beating Kedon and Maskul, and had also won the 2004 May qualifying race. He has run only once this season, and only 8 times in the last three seasons, winning a total of four races. Will probably start as second favourite, and has a clear chance.
昨年優勝の Registana 、2着の Retriever ほか好メンバーに恵まれたようですね。ただ、 Registana とのコンビで有名になったドイツの Peter Gehm 騎手が、昨年の英国遠征で致命的なミスをしたため今年は降ろされてしまったのが痛いかなと。 Registana 自身も9歳になってしまいましたし（これがせん馬ならまだまだいける年齢なのですが、なにしろ牝馬なので）。
蛇足。AAPさん、オーストラリアから遠くチェコに目を向けてるのはわかりますけど、「The Czech Republic's famous (notorious) cross country steeple」って。いちいち「悪名高き」なんて付け加えなくてもいいでしょうに。