All-Weather Eyecatchers #4

A list of horses that caught my eye during the recent weeks of racing on the All-Weather.

Aberama Gold
03/12/22 – 6.20 Wolverhampton:

Soon moved forward, took lead, before heading for home as part of leading duo; tried to kick, fought gamely, before tiering inside the finial furlong.

This should be strong form, as it was a good field with some horses in decent form. He ran right up to his current rating. Has been dropped 2lb right after this. Won off 85 on turf this year.

Clearly in fine form as evidence by subsequent fine 3rd place performance at Lingfield. I want to see a drop below a mark of 85. A Handicap over 6 furlongs around Chelmsford with a good draw would be a dream scenario.

Race Replay

He’s So Brazen
05/12/22 – 6.20 Wolverhampton:

Restrained early on, seriously keen, as he was throughout, especially between 5 to 4 furlongs out. Loomed large with seemingly big challenge entering home straight. High head-carriage, looked awkward, wandering, and ran into trouble over one furlong out.

Probably doesn’t get the trip, either. He looks desperate for a drop in trip, and looks ripe to strike then. I won’t back him beyond 7 furlongs, though.

Comes from a pretty poor family. Wouldn’t want to give him many chances. Attitude needs to be monitored too.

Race Replay

05/12/22 – 7.20 Wolverhampton:

Grabbed an uncontested lead, set good pace from the front, lead for home, tired badly as he was headed. Good race for this class, form can be upgraded.

Change of tactics seemed to bring out improvement. Started well this time, unlike often in the past. Dropped another 2lb in the meantime. Seems to recapture some form for a new yard.

Should be well handicapped now. Similar type race, 7 furlongs with good draw and not much pace will be ideal.

Race Replay

05/12/22 – 7.20 Wolverhampton:

Travelled in midfield for majority of the race. Eye catching progress from three furlongs out on the inside. Had momentum slightly stopped in home straight before fully in the clear. Didn’t find too much in final furlong.

Probably not at his best over 7 furlongs. Best form over 6 furlongs. Eye catching when last seen over this trip at Newcastle. Bit too high in the mark right now. Wait for drop to 6f and I would like to see him below a mark of 78. Ideally at Southwell.

He’s a tricky customer. Can find trouble, make a mess at the start and will always be up against pace bias on the All-Weather. Below 78 he’ll be quite well handicapped though, to offset these negatives.

Race Replay

Smarden Flyer
07/12/22 – 11.20 Lingfield:

Moved forward, pushed pace early in the race. Slightly impeded over 4f out, had to take a pull. Attempted challenge over 3f out on the outside, gave ground away before finishing tired, 4th.

Solid run, 2nd after small break. had a wind operation in June. Jury is out whether he is totally fine in his breathing. He hasn’t finished a race well since then, but this was a return to some form, and he was perhaps only tired in the end.

I am prepared to give him a chance off a career lowest mark next time out over 7-8f, as he has been dropped another 3lb post race. That looks potentially lenient.

Race Replay

07/12/22 – 11.20 Lingfield:

Pushed forward from widest draw to grab the lead. Put under pressure over 2f out, got quite tired in the home straight and fell away.

Ran quite well a number of times in recent weeks; in fact this year, caught the eye in early summer on turf. Struggles to get a real chance from the handicapper, but has been dropped another 2lb and is clearly competitive.

I want to see her to drop down to a mark of 50 or lower, and ideally into 0-50 against her own sex.

Race Replay

Flying Secret
07/12/22 – 1.25 Lingfield:

Not helped by #7 draw and the way race unfolded. Outpaced at the back of the field halfway through, but finished incredibly well, the strongest in the final furlong.

Caught eye a number of times. Especially at Salisbury on turf back in May, but also excellent return of half a year off at Kempton.

Likely needs the step up to 7 furlongs to be seen to best effect. Remains unexposed and open to improvement. Has shown enough to give him a chance.

Race Replay

Champagne Supanova
08/12/22 – 8.00 Chelmsford:

Held up at the back, travelled notably well into the home straight, made nice progress on the inside under an easy enough hands and heels ride.

First start since August, trip not ideal, didn’t look in this to run to his merit. Drop to 6f will see him competitive, should drop below last winning mark too.

Strong run four runs back in March over 6f at Lingfield off 63. Won last December off 59, ran to 63 speed rating. Couple of efforts in the 50’s in the meantime. Can be tricky some days, but clearly ripe to win if on a going day and the handbrake is off.

Race Replay

May Remain
09/12/22 – 12.15 Wolverhampton:

Repeat entry to the list from Eyecatchers #3 – another excellent performance, albeit once again over 7 furlongs, which is literally a furlong too far, as was evidence here once again. Led strongly from the front before hitting the wall in the home straight.

Very game, great attitude, even when beaten. Reduction in the mark on the cards now, especially after subsequent solid, but uneventful run over 7f three days later.

The handicapper should have enough reasons to ease him in the ratings. Once the drop to 6f comes he’s gonna be a strong bet.

Race Replay

Independent Beauty
09/12/22 – 8.15 Southwell

In rear on inside, travelled well enough. Incredible progress from three to final furlong against inside rail, before tiering, Strong performance in competitive race – winner won nto again.

Still a maiden, but looks to be capable to take advantage of basement mark soon. Ran much better over shorter 6f at Newcastle lto. 7f looks ideal.

Can be ridden closer to the pace. Has entry for fillies 7f handicap next week, and there certainly of interest.

Race Replay

10/12/22 – 4.50 Wolverhampton:

Moved forward to lead, set strong fractions, part of pace setting duo. Still lead approaching final furlong and only headed late, by eventual winner from off the pace.

Seriously strong piece of form. Returned from a long break and after being gelded; looks high enough in the mark on speed ratings but not impossible to find improvement, especially with wellbeing confirmed.

Quite consistent before his break, often placed and ran with credit. Front-running tactics seem to suit; so always of interest over 6f on AW.

Race Replay

10/12/22 – 4.50 Wolverhampton:

Part of the pace setting due, kept the leader honest, racing on his outside. Still right there with a furlong to go before he got tired.

Comeback run and gelded, still lightly raced, can improve after only six career starts. Some good performances, won well from front at Kempton last winter.

Things went wrong at Southwell in hot class 3 contest before his break, when beaten by progressive Tyber Flow. Can be upgraded.

Race Replay

Sergeant Tibbs
12/12/22 – 1:12 Lingfield:

Restrained at the back of the small field, well off pace turning for home, although travelled notably well. Started move before badly short of room over 1 furlong out. Had to delay, got going again to finish fastest over last two furlongs.

Was well backed, and clearly in tremendous form, as evidence by other recent performances as well. Possibly really well handicapped, too; may struggle on All-Weather due to his racing style, though.

Probably best over 6 furlongs, seems to have pace for minimum trip, and one to keep in mind for the next turf season, unless he gets any more help from the handicapper and finds the right race on the All-Weather.

Race Replay

Aurelia Gold
12/12/22 – 1.42 Lingfield:

Moved forward quickly, led early then tracked leader, off the bridle 3f out but kept going strongly before carried over by eventual winner over 1f out.

Frustrating sort, still a maiden. Second run for new yard. Ran 4x times to speed rating 52+. Down to intriguing mark. Would be really interesting down to 7 furlongs, ideally in a fillies race; I don’t think she truly stays 1 mile.

Race Replay

With Respect
14/12/22 – 12.50 Lingfield:

Bit awkward out of #1 gate, needed encouragement to move forward, did so eventually to take lead as part of a duo. Travelled well into the home straight before finishing very tired.

Second run after two years off. Intriguing comeback run at Kempton, when bumped early, and seriously keen subsequently. Smart as a juvenile on his debut running to a 90 speed rating. Issues subsequently, and long break.

Wasn’t expected last two runs. One to monitor for the right day, possibly better over 7 furlongs if allowed to stride forward.

Race Replay

Dashing To You
14/12/22 – 1:55 Lingfield:

Possibly hampered at the start (hard to see but mentioned in race commentary), certainly slowly into stride, never really travelling before turning for home; excellent progress from 3f out, finished strongly.

Unlucky last time out as well, clearly a tricky sort. Could be quite well handicapped when he can put it all together, ran 3 times to speed ratings higher than current mark. Would love to see a return to 10f.

Race Replay

John The Baptist
14/12/22 – 3:30 Kempton:

Under drive early to get into position, outpaced from 4f out, lost many positions in the home straight until he rallied incredibly strongly in the final furlong to finish 4th.

First good run since a debut win in Ireland. Probably better than current 60 rating, as the finish to this race is a clear indication, if he ever can put it all together.

Difficult sort, as evidence by headgear combination. Will need to step up to 1m to be seen to best effect, but needs to settle to have a real chance.

Race Replay

Brandy Station
15/12/22 – 2:33 Southwell:

Prominent on stands’ side, travelled well enough but increasingly outpaced halfway through the race. Stayed on strongly in the final furlong, finishing the fastest.

Strong speed rating of 58, in line with his best performances. In excellent form. Southwell 5f specialist. Always with a chance over this CD, ideally with a low draw.

May be too closely handicapped to his best current form at the moment, though. Ideally would love to see one or two lesser runs at different tracks before returning to this CD off lower mark.

Race Replay

Arlecchino’s Gift
16/12/22 – 1:25 Southwell:

Wide draw, travelled on the outside, didn’t look entirely happy there and was pushed out even wider by a rival 4f out. Hang in the home straight, finished well beaten.

Wasn’t expected, returned from small break. Won 3 times this year, twice on the All-Weather, all over 6 furlongs. Bit too high in the ratings right now. One to wait for to drop a few more pounds and watch the market.

Race Replay

Testing Faith
16/12/22 – 3.10 Southwell:

Was quickest out of the gate, but possibly didn’t quite have the pace to stay in the lead; badly hampered 7f out, race was probably over there and then. Faded badly in the home straight; entitled to, after 111 days off.

Still a maiden, but showed some promise earlier this year. Falls rapidly in his mark to a rating he could be seriously well handicapped.

His pedigree suggests a step up to 10 furlongs will be interesting. He only had one try, right before his break, and it’s fair to conclude that run is best to forgive. Can move forward. One to keep an eye on in the next weeks.

Race Replay

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