James Boyle’s Horses To Follow – Week Sixteen
We were less than a length away from having a cracking week, but it was a grand one anyway. Fattsota, only on the HTF list since last week, made it first time lucky when winning a Newmarket handicap on Saturday and did so at an SP of 4/1 (6/1 available in the morning). The step up in trip suited perfectly as hoped and after travelling well, David O’Meara’s charge showed an excellent attitude under pressure to win by a neck. Winning again after a rise in the ratings will be tough, however, and I’m taking him off the list.
Breton Rock (7/2) won for the preview column, taking the step up to a Group 2 in his stride. Like the above, he also moved well through the race before finding plenty under pressure and this time the winning margin was a short-head. Whether he will be able to play a part at the very top-level is questionable but he’s not completely exposed, is evidently improving and could have done with softer ground than he faced at the weekend. For all I know, he could, but everything will get tougher from here on in, that’s for sure.
The culprit responsible for my earlier comment is Confessional and that was due to being so close to winning the Great Saint Wilfred handicap at Ripon despite being sent off as a 20/1 poke. He had what was an excellent draw, got the perfect ride from David Allan and looked all set to collect when bursting through to lead inside the final furlong. Unfortunately, he’s more of a 5f performer and that told as a couple of the others finished their races better to catch him late on. No complaints and he remains on the HTF list for another while, but this was heartbreaking!
Others who lined up during the week include Arantes, who ran well enough to finish third on the all-weather, and Polski Max, who was beaten three-parts of a length in the St Wilfred consolation race at 14/1. Both will be taken forward and can make their mark in handicap company, particularly the latter as he’s stupidly well-treated nowadays and in good order.
Those with entries this week; Boomerang Bob, Burano, Dominate, Fort Bastion, Jordan Princess, Magic Hurricane, Moviesta, Queensberry Rules, Redvers & Short Squeeze. Busy!
Horses To Follow – Week Sixteen:
Jamaican Bolt (16th August) –
Now that we’re reaching the Autumn time, the rain will come out more regularly and the soft ground performers will be in their element. One such horse who should be peaking before long is Jamaican Bolt and he shaped very promisingly in a decent race at Doncaster. Although racing on ground quicker than ideal, Geoff Oldroyd’s 6-year-old ran his best race this season in finishing third behind Go Far and would appear to be coming to the boil nicely. Some of his other efforts have been encouraging enough as well and now that he’s rated in the eighties again, connections should have plenty of options before the season is out. A soft surface on a flat track is ideal and one thing that I hope can happen again is that the jockey on board, whoever it may be, will have instructions to ride the horse handier than has been the case of late. I think that he’s a grinder as much as anything, so unless there’s a mental pace burn-up towards the front-end, he isn’t best suited to sitting back. Don’t get me wrong, he can win if ridden patiently but may just be a bit more favoured by lining up closer to the pace. Anyway, there’s at least a 0-90 handicap this fellow before the season is out (becoming very well-treated) and this is the right time to start keeping him on side.
Mezzotint (16th August) –
It has taken a while for Mezzotint to come around to Stuart Williams’ way of thinking, as the 5-year-old lost his form completely and it wasn’t showing many signs of coming back until recently. After a couple of mildly encouraging spins at York and then Newmarket, the former Botti inmate hinted as if returning to top form when finishing fourth of 10 in a Doncaster handicap on Saturday. At the line, he was little more than a length behind Morache Music and there are reasons to suggest that he’s better than the bare form, the main one being that he couldn’t get a run through for some way. His momentum being so badly checked clearly didn’t help but despite that he finished to good effect without having a hard race. Now rated 6lbs below his last winning mark, he’s clearly well treated on past exploits and based on the weekend’s evidence, it won’t take long for another success to come his way.
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