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Shattered Love

It is understandable that Elimay got most of the attention after she won the Opera Hat Chase at Naas on Saturday. Willie Mullins’ mare was impressive in winning the two-mile listed race, over a distance that is probably short of her best, and she is a progressive mare who deserves her place at the top of the market for the new Mares’ Chase at the Cheltenham Festival. However, the performance that Shattered Love put up in finishing second may have gone a little under the radar as a consequence. The distance of the race was too sharp for Gordon Elliott’s mare too. She disputed the lead with Yukon Lil from early and, while she got out-paced at the top of the home straight and dropped to third, she stayed on well from the final fence to get back up for second place behind Elimay, four and a half lengths in front of Yukon Lil.

Shattered Love is 10 now, but she retains lot of ability. This was her first run back since she finished down the field in a warm three-mile handicap hurdle at Navan in December, a performance which you can easily allow her, given that it was her first run over hurdles in over three and a half years. On her previous run, she was impressive in winning a listed mares’ chase at Clonmel over two and a half miles, a race that she won last year too. She has run in an Irish National and in a Gold Cup, and she won the Grade 1 Neville Hotels Chase over three miles as a novice, but two and a half miles is probably her optimum trip now and, as such, the new Mares’ Chase at Cheltenham is a good target for her too. Interestingly, she won the JLT Chase over the Mares’ Chase course and distance in 2018.
Naas, 13th February 2021