Going into the weekend Ascot was the only meeting where the yard was represented and Kerrow got the ball rolling with a good run in the 2m5f Maiden Hurdle. He travelled and jumped well out of the tacky ground conditions and finished 7 lengths behind the winner, taking up 4th place. Despite one below par run in a bumper last year he has been a consistent performer and is still learning his trade, and it wont be too long before gets his head in front.
Yanworth was having a significant rise in class on his 3rd outing over hurdles and was coming into the race an unbeaten horse. He put up another fantastic performance to beat the smart Charbel, from the Kim Bailey stable, without having to be asked too many questions. Ridden from the front, it was great to see him go round Ascot with his ears pricked, jumping well and at the same time getting a great education from his jockey Barry Geraghty. Based on this performance he has put himself at the forefront of the leading British novice hurdlers he certainly seems to hold an exciting future.
Shadarpour was our final runner on Friday and despite going up 6lbs after running a fantastic race at Cheltenham he put up another solid performance, finishing 5th on ground that would have been softer than ideal. Will Featherstone has struck up a good partnership with the horse and with the help of his claim they can hopefully continue this level of consistency.
Even though we only had the 2 runners on Saturday there was still plenty of excuses to be excited, Karezak was trying his hand at 3m over hurdles, with the decision to go chasing to be put on hold until next season. Running in what looked to be a good renewal of the JLT Long Walk Hurdle. This was a big learning experience for him, having always been running over 2 miles he had to learn to settle going up in trip if he was to give himself the best chance of finishing his race in good fashion. Although he looked to run a bit too freely early on in the race he soon settled and despite kicking a few hurdles out of his way, which can sometimes be the case when a horse runs back over hurdles after previously jumping a fence, he ran a lovely race. A vast majority of his better performances both on the flat and over jumps have been on good ground or better and to finish 4th behind Colin Tizzard’s exceptional Thistlecrack on ground softer than ideal highlights what a good run it was, and this performance has now hopefully opened up more options for him.
Winner Massagot was returning to the course after notching up a good win at the previous meeting and despite coming into the competitive Ladbroke Hurdle in great form he never really managed to land a blow in the race. He is a forward going type of horse and it is imperative he learns to settle if he is to show his true potential, although he did settle well on Saturday it was a competitive race and he will have learned a bundle from the hustle and bustle of a big handicap hurdle. A big rangy sort who is growing all the time it was a big ask for a 4 year old of his make up to win a race of this nature so early on his life, albeit the race was eventually won/shared by a 4 year old ! He still remains a very exciting prospect for the future as there is still plenty of physical and mental improvement left in him.
With a quiet week ahead, it is all systems go for the weekend and there are some exciting entries being made, hopefully all the horses make it through the week and get to their intended targets and that we have something else besides Christmas to celebrate !