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Grand National - Racing: Bravemansgame can prove a point

Bravemansgame, touted as the next big-name star at Paul Nicholls' all-conquering Somerset stable, has the chance to show why he is so well regarded at Aintree on Friday.

Owned by John Dance and Bryan Drew, Bravemansgame had been due to run in the Brown Advisory Novices' Chase, but was withdrawn because of the watered and rain-softened ground and is now 6/4 to win the Mildmay Novices' Chase.

That left L'Homme Presse (6/5) to produce an impressive performance, but Nicholls' exciting seven-year-old gets a crack at that rival in a race which the trainer has won four times.

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His runner finished second in the Sefton Novices' Hurdle at the Grand National meeting 12 months ago and has since developed into a wonderful novice chaser, beating some decent sorts at Newton Abbot and Haydock, before a step into Grade 1 company at Kempton over Christmas.

There he landed the Kauto Star Novices' Chase and Nicholls has already earmarked him for a return to that venue for December's King George VI Chase.

Bravemansgame in fine fettle

Bravemansgame, a point-to-point winner who cost connections £370,000 at the sales, was last seen winning a novice handicap chase at Newbury, when he gave upwards of 16lb to his rivals.

"He seems really well and I'm very happy with him," said Nicholls.

"It's a good race - a really interesting race, but we're happy. I think the flat track and the trip will be perfect for him."

Just four runners go off in the Mildmay Novices' Chase, with the field completed by Gordon Elliott's Fury Road and the Lucinda Russell charge Ahoy Senor.

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