James Boyle’s Horses To Follow – Week Eighteen
Not much to shout about in the past week. Aktabantay was a 9/4 winner for the Saturday preview column, although I’m not sure how as he looked beaten everywhere bar the line. Those who think that a jockey makes little difference in the saddle (oddly, there are plenty!) should take a look at the replay and rethink their opinion, as it’s wrong. Ryan Moore was an absolute demon in the finish and credit goes to him.
The HTF list had four runners and Mezzotint so nearly added another big-priced winner, finishing second at Chester despite going off at a mammoth 25/1. In contrast to the above, he had the race in safekeeping until mugged late in the day and anyone who backed him can feel a little (or a lot!) aggrieved. The handicapper will stick him up a few lbs for that effort – which isn’t one bit ideal – but I will persist for at least one more run.
Jamaican Bolt raced for us for the first time at Sandown on Saturday but he had a rotten draw to overcome, having been positioned in stall 17 of 17. That made his task next to impossible and things didn’t pan out in-running either, as he was stuck out wide without cover and got no worthwhile pull into the race. Given those circumstances, he ran a screamer (well, a mini-screamer) to finish in fifth place and can improve on it soon.
Atantes was stepped up in trip as hoped when running at Carlisle on Wednesday but despite being well backed in the market, he wasn’t up to the task. It wasn’t a horrible run by any means and I think that the ground was too quick, so there are reasons to forgive and persist. Monsieur Chevalier is the other who ran and he wasn’t very good at all, finishing out the back in a decent mile handicap on the All-Weather. We’ve had three runs from him without success but there was plenty of promise on his penultimate start and I’ll not give up yet, for all that he’s an annoying sort. There’s definitely a handicap in him soon and he handles some cut on the turf, giving connections some more options in the coming weeks & months.
HTF entries this week; Burano, Fort Bastion, Jamaican Bolt, Magic Hurricane, Mezzotint, Monsieur Chevalier, Moviesta, Polski Max, Redvers, Stomachion. Not many…
Only adding one to the list today. The racing in the past week wasn’t great.
Horses To Follow – Week Eighteen:
Dark Castle (29th August) –
This may look like an odd inclusion but I thought that Dark Castle ran a grand sort of race at Thirsk on Friday and it could be built upon soon. A ninth (of 18) placed finish was all he could muster but the winner was clearly still well ahead of his mark and if you take him out of the equation, he wasn’t beaten all that far behind plenty of talented sprinters in that sort of grade. Thrisk’s track may not have been completely favourable to him either and at the least it was a big step up on his disappointing effort at Pontefract on his penultimate start. Given that he was beaten over 5-lengths last week, the handicapper will hopefully ease him a pound or two and if it’s the latter, he’d be back on the same mark as when second to a talented David O’Meara 3-year-old at York in June. That fellow is now rated a full 18lbs higher now and Micky Hammond’s charge ran him to within a neck on that occasion, with it being 3-lengths back to the others. It helps to show what he is capable of and if he can be coaxed back to something like that form, there’s surely a Class 4 handicap in him soon.
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