Friday January 20
We have won with four of our six runners since our double last Saturday, including a potential Cheltenham Festival Bumper candidate in Perfect Harmony, so all we need is for Jack Frost to make an early retreat tomorrow as we have runners entered at four meetings.
Before heading off for a day’s shooting Alan outlined his hopes should racing get the green light, and, with Haydock possibly being the likeliest to beat the weather we’ll start off with Elgin, who is scheduled to run in the Grade 2 Rossington Main Novices’ Hurdle.
Alan said:”He won very well at Kempton on Boxing Day and he settled much better than he had done at Newcastle. I don’t know how good he is, but he is progressive and stepping up in class will help tell us whether the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham is a realistic aim.”
Of our other runners, Alan added:”We will know about Ascot early, but we have three there. Dino Velvet tries to get back on track in the Juvenile Hurdle, having disappointed us in the Finale Junior Hurdle at Chepstow in December. He looked like dropping right out down the back but rallied up the straight, though it was definitely not him. He is better than that and we have changed his bridle to try and get him to drop in and relax.
“Gibralfaro goes for the £50,000 handicap hurdle which is his prep for the Coral Cup. I was delighted with how well he ran when stepping up in trip at the Hennessy meeting, and, though he is creeping up the weights, I still think he can be competitive.
“There could also be more to come from Laser Light in the EBF Novices’ Hurdle as he looked not to stay the three miles when beaten at odds-on at Southwell and will appreciate dropping back in trip. He has also run well at Ascot before, though he is also declared for Taunton as a back-up and could head down the M5 should things change.
“The EBF Qualifier is Laser Light’s entry at Taunton, but we also have The Unit in that race. He is getting his act together and starting to race properly since he has learned to settle and he goes there on a hat-trick and is proven over the course.
“Cosmeapolitan has to take on older novices down at Taunton, but I’m glad we didn’t take up the Newbury entry on Wednesday as he would not have enjoyed that ground. He is a decent Flat horse who has taken well to hurdling, though he was not wildly impressive first time out at Newbury. Still, he did what he was asked and got the job done, and he’ll come on for that, besides which the ground there should suit him much better.
“Finally, we have Ardamir seemingly the one guaranteed to get a run in the maiden on the polytrack at Lingfield, where we have Adam Kirby on board which is always a plus. He was our most frustrating runner of last week as he was all dressed up with nowhere to go at Wolverhampton and couldn’t find an escape route. Still, it showed what good form he’s in, and, hopefully, he’ll make up for it here.”