Having won his last two races last season at Cheltenham and Haydock, it was wonderful to see Monbeg Theatre win on seasonal debut to land the hat trick. He was once again given a peach of a ride by Page Fuller, who is now down to claiming 3lbs, and was really flying until she crashed out on Fact of the Matter in the Durham National and subsequently broke her collar bone. This is obviously hugely frustrating on a number of levels, not least because Monbeg Theatre will now head to the Grade 2 West Yorkshire Hurdle at Wetherby on Saturday, and will need a new jockey!
Monbeg Theatre wins again and heads into Graded company.
There have been two Graded races so far this winter and we’ve been placed in both of them. Double Treasure ran his heart out on unsuitably soft ground to be 2nd in the Grade 2 Persian War Novice Hurdle at Chepstow, where he was only just beaten with 20 lengths back to the 3rd horse. It was a huge run from Double Treasure, and we were all delighted, but gutted in the same sentence. On the same weekend Dans Le Vent ran a belter in the Grade 3 Silver Trophy to be 4th where he was beaten only 3 lengths. We may look to target the Pertemps Final at the Festival with him.
I was hugely impressed with the way Thistle Do Nicely bolted up at Wincanton on his hurdling debut. He still looked very green and immature but he quickened up in the style of a nice horse and he looks to have a very bright future. We’ll look to win a novice with a penalty before thinking too far ahead with him, but he could be quite exciting.
Thistle Do Nicely wins well, and could be pretty smart.
We had another winner today when Our Reward strolled around Fakenham to win with his head in his chest. He hadn’t won for two years and so deservedly got his head in front again. Unfortunately, he won by 26 lengths, so the handicapper might not let him win for another two years, so we’ll look to run him again next week either over hurdles with a penalty, or over fences where he escapes a penalty.
Our Reward deservedly wins again.
As well as the winners, we’ve had our fair share of seconds over the last couple of weeks too. Kalahari Queen was 2nd on her chasing debut, and will improve for the experience as well as when she encounters softer ground. Having won earlier this month, Between the Waters hit the crossbar at Plumpton where he went down fighting, and he should be able to win again this autumn.
We have had 6 Bumper runners so far this season, and all of them have been in the frame. Timcoda was 2nd at Worcester and will go hurdling now; Risk and Co was 2nd at Sedgefield; Redbridge Gold was a decent 2nd in a competitive mares bumper at Carlisle and may head to the Listed Bumper at Cheltenham’s November meeting; whilst Thomas Macdonagh was 2nd at Ffos Las in a warm race and has just undergone a small wind op, he could be a very smart prospect. Footloose was a very promising 4th at Bangor on debut, and Alrightjack was 5th at Chepstow in a race that wasn’t run to suit and should make amends in November.
Hogan’s Height was 3rd on his reappearance at Fakenham in the middle of the month, and should improve as the season progresses. His early season target will be the Beecher Chase over the Grand National fences at Aintree in December. Meanwhile, Floral Bouquet was also 3rd at Fakenham and has just undergone a small wind op as well which should bring some more improvement from her. Triple hurdle winner, Lord Topper filled the no 3 spot in a beginners chase at Bangor but has a date with the sales now and will be a lovely horse to go Ladies Pointing with.
It was lovely to go back to Cheltenham again last weekend, a racecourse that always gives me goose bumps when we have runners there. Its where dreams do come true but unfortunately Some Day Soon came up a touch short in the maiden hurdle there albeit only beaten 6 lengths. He should be more than capable of winning his novice before he progresses throughout the season, and will improve for a step up in trip.