- National Hunt Trainer Dan Skelton drives new Maserati Levante SUV in a race against professional jockey brother Harry on horseback
- Point-to-Point challenge took place in the grounds of Chavenage House Estate in the Cotswolds
In the build up to the Grand National, luxury Italian car brand Maserati devised a unique ‘car vs horse’ challenge to explore the capabilities of the first ever Maserati SUV, the Levante, in an environment naturally suited to its equine competitor.
The challenge provided another competitive twist as it was a race between two brothers; National Hunt Trainer and Maserati ambassador Dan Skelton behind the wheel of the new Maserati Levante Diesel while National Hunt Jockey Harry Skelton took the reins of Point to Pointer Dinnie O.
Captured in a thrilling video, the race across the grounds of Chavenage House Estate, in the Cotswolds, can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/ZCzUsgREZ7I
Following the rules of historical point-to-point racing, Dan and Harry were tasked with travelling between two set points as fast as possible. The nature of the race and the course allowed the Levante to showcase its off-road capabilities, having to navigate through rough terrain. With both competitors taking different routes to the finish line, the power and speed of the Levante eventually told, with Dan overtaking Harry and Dinnie O on the final straight.
Commenting on the challenge, Dan Skelton said, “Understandably the yard is a very busy place at the moment and it was enjoyable to take some time out of the pressures of preparation for the Aintree Festival. Racing my brother through the British countryside in the new Maserati Levante was fantastic fun and of course the best combination won!”
Harry Skelton said, “We’ve always been ultra-competitive and of course I never like losing to my brother. The challenge was something very different to my usual day job, and I’m hoping Dan will lend me the keys to his Levante soon so I can get behind the wheel for a test drive.”
To download the images from the race click here.
Q&A with Dan Skelton:
What makes the Grand National so special to you?
The race has a very long history and is a unique spectacle in the racing calendar. The setting and atmosphere are quite incredible, and the race is really something for the city of Liverpool to be very proud of. Everyone’s heard of the Grand National and it has a great following.
What sort of preparation is going on at the yard so close to the Aintree Festival?
We’ve had a little time to regroup after the Cheltenham Festival and now it’s back to normal, with everyone working hard to get the horses there in tip top shape. We’ve had a few winners recently so the yard seems in good form and the horses are running well, and we’re all just hoping for the bit of luck we all need.
How many horses have you got going to the Aintree Festival this year? Who in particular should we be keeping an eye on? Do you have any tips?
We have a strong team of horses heading to Aintree, and No Hassle Hoff purposely swerved Cheltenham for a tilt at the Grade 1 3-mile novices hurdle; he’s run well all season and deserves to win a nice race.
Three Musketeers is another who has been kept fresh for Aintree so it could be worth keeping an eye on him as he runs back over hurdles. We could have a couple of runners over the National fences in the Foxhunters & Topham chases, but nothing for the Grand National itself this year.
Do you have any tips for the Grand National?
Saphir Du Rheu ran very well in the Cheltenham Gold Cup recently and could go well for my old boss Paul Nicholls if taking to the fences, and Nigel Twiston-Davies Blaklion would have a touch of class and stays very well.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
About the Maserati Levante
Please visit www.maserati.co.uk/maserati/gb/en/models/levante
Officine Alfieri Maserati was founded on December 1st, 1914 in Bologna, Italy. Since then, Maserati has played a consistently important role in the history of sports car culture and its development. Every Maserati is like a work of art, its perfection expressing the marque’s proud history. Celebrating over 100 years of unmistakable styling and technological innovation, Maserati is a company in rapid expansion. With presence in 65 markets worldwide, its role is clearly confirmed as an international ambassador of Italian excellence. This excellence is conveyed every day with passion through products of outstanding performance seen in the GranTurismo, GranCabrio, Ghibli, Quattroporte and the new Levante SUV.
For more information on Maserati, visit: www.maserati.co.uk