A list of horses that caught my eye during the recent weeks of racing on the All-Weather.
20/12/22 – 3.55 Southwell:
Moved across from wide draw enthusiastically, probably wasted too much energy fighting for his head early on. Tracked pace four lengths off, going well entering home straight. Looked awkward, then hanging badly from 2 furlongs out. Empty in closing stages.
Won well lto over 7f in Novice company. Would be interesting down in trip, too. Dam did her best over minimum trip. He ran to a 74 speed rating in second career start. Hence opening mark could underestimate him.
Tricky sort. Shown tendency to hang. Still lightly raced and well backed on every occasion. Could be a good deal better than OR 70 if he can get his act together.
The Cola Kid
20/12/22 – 4.30 Southwell:
Moved forward to grab the lead, did a lot in the first three furlongs. Unable to quicken in the home straight, still a solid run, in line with last two performances.
Clearly best over 6 furlongs. Was not expected the last number of times. Comes down to excellent mark. Ran to higher speed ratings last year, and looks capable if on a going day, ideally 6f with a good draw.
20/12/22 – 5.00 Southwell:
Off to a quick start, led early on, then as part of duo many lengths ahead of field before fading very badly.
Some return to form, as the enthusiasm for racing is still there. One that’s hard to catch. Comes down to solid mark again. Ran 3x times to speed ratings 54+ last year.
Ran okay nto, but did too much too soon after not starting the sharpest. Ideally would like to see a couple pounds lower in the mark (<62) before getting involved over 6f .
21/12/22 – 6.30 Wolverhampton:
Was going well for the entire race toward the inside rail, possibly coming with a winning move before badly short of room over 1f out. Got going again. Excellent run.
Consistent 9yo, in the grip of the handicapper right now; still can win, but best speed rating in last half year was only 50. Want to see him down to this handicap mark, too, before getting involved, then over 7 furlongs.
22/12/22 – 11.50 Lingfield:
Lead from the front, albeit pestered by rival throughout. Set good, strong pace early on. Still leading at final furlong, before headed over half a furlong from home. Still managed to hold on for third. Should be strong form, ran to 59 speed rating.
Lenient handicapper dropped him another 2lb. Will be really competitive in similar race over 7f off. Ran tp 64 and 65 speed rating within last half year over this C&D.
O Twenty Boy
22/12/22 – 5.00 Southwell:
Bit outpaced at back of the field on stands’ side from over 2f out. Made nice progress in the final furlong under easy hands and heels, though.
Probably better over 6f, especially now as an 8yo. Ran well a number of times this year, including 4 performances achieving speed ratings of 60+.
Already down to a mark of 60. any further reduction will be interesting, in particular once he goes up in trip again.
Eagle Eyed Freddie
22/12/22 – 6.30 Southwell:
Uncontested lead by a couple of lengths. Set blistering pace, especially in the middle part. Still a few lengths ahead over 1 furlong out but tired rapidly. Huge run, speed rating 58.
Consistent front-runner. NTO performance not so good, should help to get some respite from the handicapper. Anything below OR 55 will be intriguing over a mile with a good draw and not much competition for the lead. A drop to 7f would be incredibly intriguing, too.
22/12/22 – 7.00 Southwell:
Tracked pace, travelled much the strongest over 2 furlongs out but found little once again. Same story as lto when he travelled like a winner just to fade badly.
Knocked on the door multiple times but it’s obvious he doesn’t truly stays a mile. Pedigree points toward 6 furlongs, in fact. Will only back him if he drops to 7 furlongs. Then should be a cracking chance, ideally with a good draw. He’s not the sharpest starter.
Ran four times to 50+ speed ratings in the last twelve months, to 51 lto; on a mark of 51 right now, huge chance in the right race.
27/12/22 – 4.30 Wolverhampton:
Restrained at the back of the field travelling seriously well. Stuck in traffic and no chance until late when finishing third under hands and heels.
NTO run over 6f can be ignored as well. Wide draw, travelling on the outside keenly and big drifter on the day. Clearly better than this, and more likely in good nick as well as on a good mark. ideally drops down to 5f as best performances came over minimum trip.
Ran three times to speed ratings 60+ on turf; yet to replicate on the All-Weather. But this performance suggests he’s able to win if the handbrake is off. Has shown ability to move forward in the past as well.
Shark Two One
28/12/22 – 6.25 Newcastle:
Pushing pace on far side, they went a serious pace. Was still right there at the final furlong marker before getting desperately tired. Managed to hold on for 4th place.
Was capable to finish fine runner-up off 80 and running to a 73 speed rating last April. Never been in the same form again, but this was a return to some form, racing off a career lowest mark. Deserves another chance over 6f to see whether he can follow-up.
30/12/22 – 5.00 Wolverhampton:
Moved quickly forward and led as part of duo setting good pace. Still ahead as they turned for home before tiring quite badly. Strong race with winner went back-to-back and runner-up in form.
Off small break. Could be bang on next time out, possibly another reduction in his mark. Ideally drops down into 0-50; ran largely in better races this year.
Consistent front-runner over this course and distance. With lower mark and possibly easier race should have every opportunity to go close soon.
31/12/22 – 3.15 Lingfield:
Make good use of #1 gate and moved forward, led the field going solid clip, seemingly really enjoying himself for majority of the race. Tired from 1.5f out, though.
Ran to speed ratings 59 and 60 since September, although on turf, but career best AW SR is 59. Will be on a pretty fair mark soon. Ideally want to see him drop below 60 to become really interested.
He was beaten only by a neck off 60 running to 60 speed rating at Windsor in October with first time headgear (CP); I believe he’s as good on the All-Weather; watch out for application of blinkers potentially and/or drop into 0-60.
01/01/2023 – 4.56 Southwell:
Quickly out of the gates and led as part of trio by a number of lengths, going a seriously hard pace. Tired badly from over a furlong out and hung to his left, but did best of front-runners holding on for 2nd.
Huge run. Went back to back prior. High mark now, may find it tough in Handicaps. More interesting on Stakes races over minimum trip. kept improving with age and this run confirms he’s as good as his current rating.
01/01/2023 – 5.26 Southwell:
Led the field, although closely followed. Challenged from two furlongs out, eventually got behind, but stuck to it impressively in the closing stages.
Off a small break, had to carry big weight down in class. Hot race for class 5, though. Should find easier opportunities. On a good mark judged on turf performances in 2022.
02/01/2023 – 1.53 Lingfield:
Travelled in rear on the outside off the rail, possibly wider than ideal. Moved toward the inside over 2 furlongs out, short of room and momentum stopped around the home bend. Possibly cost him the race.
Unlucky sort. Ran really well but found trouble multiple times over the last weeks. Ran consistently strong speed ratings in line with his mark of 55, 58 and 59.
Put up 2lb in the meantime. Can race more forward than here. Think he is still a win ahead with a clear run, ideally over 6 furlongs.
02/01/2023 – 5.40 Newcastle:
Got significantly outpaced from halfway on, lost ground, before running on rather well in the final furlong.
Handicap debut off a break and freshly gelded, showed nothing in three starts prior. Should improve, especially up in trip. Looks to be crying out for a return to 6 furlongs. Could be interesting then.
02/01/2023 – 5.40 Newcastle:
A tiny step slow off the gate, before quickly moving forward against stands’ side. Led and was fastest over first half of the race but appeared to be hanging throughout. Faded badly in the last two furlongs.
Comeback run and Handicap debut. On a basement mark. Showed enough to suggest he can win a poor race. Family tends to do well on All-Weather. Sire has tremendous record over 5f at Newcastle in Handicaps.
May need to step up tp 6f to be seen to best effect. Headgear possibly needed. Wouldn’t rule out minimum trip with HG applied.
03/01/23 – 2.00 Chelmsford:
Slowly away, quickly pushed forward to bulldoze his way to the front after one furlong. Set what looked a hot pace, and resemble more like an extended 5 furlong sprint, as nobody wanted to really go ahead until he grabbed the lead.
Emptied quickly entering the home straight when put under pressure by dedicated 5f sprinter from 3 furlongs out. Winner eventually came from well off the pace.
Still a maiden after 9 runs, but showed plenty of promise, especially two runs back over this CD when he ran off 57 to speed rating 54. Should get bit more help from handicapper now. Usually moves forward.
03/01/23 – 2.00 Chelmsford:
Was quickly out of the gate and briefly led, before rivals took over. Keen in the first half of the race. Didn’t have the pace to match winner and third but ran on well for a 59 speed rating n only his second start on the sand.
Ran an interesting race lto over 5f on debut for the new yard also, then at Wolverhampton after a break. Is still a maiden but knocked on the door a few times and achieved some solid speed ratings.
Want to see him drop below a mark of 60 and race over 6f. Not interested in next weeks 7f entry. Will likely pull too hard.
04/01/23 – 2.50 Newcastle:
Good, quick start, led the field by a couple of lengths setting a seemingly hot pace. Travelled well but eventually caught, headed and quickly beaten over one furlong out.
Doesn’t truly stay beyond the minimum trip (0/13 over 6f). Can be upgraded here and ran better than bare form lto as well. Not getting younger but still capable of running well. Especially interesting down to 5f with any additional help from the handicapper.
04/01/23 – 3.20 Newcastle:
Travelled smoothly tracking the pace. In a good position over 2 furlongs out, but also in a pocket with no way to really get out. Jockey kept the gelding restraint, pulling back to the rear of the field approaching the final furlong in order to find space. Finished strongly, under hands and heels.
Familiar story. Mostly a similar story to a myriad of previous runs. Obviously ready to win, but needs to have absolutely everything to go right.
Won’t back him on the All-Weather unless he finds a way to drop below a mark of 50. He should be too well handicapped to lose, unless he run backwards. Otherwise wait until turf season, with better opportunities more suitable to his style.
04/01/23 – 7.00 Kempton:
Good start, travelled nicely amongst group of horses up with the pace. had to switch 2f out, and again over 1f out in order for clear run, looked bit disorganised, too, lost momentum. Ran on really well.
Handicap debut. Strong follow-up performance from recent comeback over 5f last month. Looks on fair mark but can improve for step up to 7f. Sire stamina index of 9.4, dam, although a sprinter during her racing career, produced 1m 5f winner already.
The Nail Gunner
05/01/23 – 2.15 Wolverhampton:
Grabbed the lead, set solid pace. Was up there for a long time and still fought gamely even after headed in the final furlong. This is strong form, winner and 3rd came from off the pace, and were on going days.
7f is too far, especially off current mark. Is rated right to his best. Ran 64 speed rating over 6f in July. Will be competitive, nonetheless, particularly with a good draw and if not much pace to compete against.
I want him down to 6f again and dropping by a couple of pounds. May need a few runs to get there.
06/01/23 – 6.15 Southwell:
Brilliant start, super quick out of the gates and showed solid early speed, settled well tracking the pace and kicked nicely in the home straight. Tired late.
Was most likely not run on merit in all starts prior. Clearly capable off current mark. April foal with a bit of scope, especially going up to a mile interesting.
Praise Of Shadow
06/01/23 – 8.15 Southwell:
Caught three deep on the outside, close up with the pace from his wide draw. Travelled well into home straight, kept fighting, but slightly hampered in tight race for gaps, before eased; ran home easily.
Put up strong speed rating when winning over CD lto. In line with similar speed ratings in when running really well in defeat. Clearly in superb form.
Possibly a bit too high in the ratings to consider really well handicapped. Drop a couple of pounds and 6f with race to dominate will see him have a big chance once again, though.
07/01/23 – 12.35 Lingfield:
Settled in rear, always travelling wide. Switched inside for challenge in the home straight. Ran on nicely, slightly short of room 1f out before going again.
Wasn’t expected in three runs. Should get a low opening mark. Looks one I am only interested if stepping up to 10f. On pedigree a fair possibly, and could unlock improvement. I liked the way she finished and responded late to the jockeys urgings.
Wake Up Harry
07/01/23 – 1.10 Lingfield:
Restrained, travelling smoothly well off the pace. Still going well when turning for home wider than ideal, before unleashing a fine challenge in the home straight. Not quite the speed to get to leaders and came from too far back.
Hasn’t been racing over the right trip the last two runs. Can forgive comeback run after long break too. Clear sign of hitting some form again here, will be interesting if up to a mile.
I’d also be seriously keen to see him up to 10 furlongs again. The two previous tries can be forgiven for various reasons. If he’s turned out in the not too distinct future over 1m-10f he should be a huge runner.
07/01/23 – 8.00 Kempton:
Pushed after the start to get into position, travelled a few lengths off pace tracking it throughout, still going okay turning for home, bit flat footed as pace suddenly increased over 2f out; switched inside and ran on well, not knocked about.
Comeback run since Royal Ascot in June, in the meantime gelded and sold out of AOB for GBP120k and now trained in the UK.
Still open to improvement. Well bred and full-brother to some smart mares. Took him a few start to get off the mark. But some strong performances in defeat.
Second in a maiden behind subsequent Futurity runner-up Sissoko. Caught eye at Royal Ascot in hot Golden Gates Stakes when finishing well from the rear of the field over 10 furlongs. Races off the same mark currently. Will improve for the run. A strongly run mile needed, or else a step up to 10 furlongs.