My Five to Follow this Season
It’s been quite a quiet week and it’s a shame that the jumps meetings have been cancelled over the next couple of days. It can’t be helped, though, these things happen, and you just have to get the horses looked after and try and find them new targets. It did look as if a lot of the races I was due to ride in this weekend would have been nice starting points for the horses, but we’ll just have to try and find something else for them now.
I’m especially disappointed not to be able to ride Angels Breath at Market Rasen. I had some nice-looking rides there and also at Uttoxeter, so it’s annoying but that’s the way it goes!
Five to Follow
The Real Whacker was fantastic last season, jumping as well as he did and showing a natural attitude towards his chasing. I think he could, potentially, have a really exciting season. He’s still looking very much unexposed, so – hopefully – he’ll have another good one. I imagine that the long-term goal for him would be the Gold Cup, but we’ll have to see how he gets on. Paddy [Neville] did a great job of campaigning him last year and I’m sure he’ll do the same again.
Weveallbeencaught has been schooling and working nicely and, while he only ended up having the one win last year, we’d always thought he’d be a better horse over fences. He’s a fine specimen of a horse, and the idea with him this season is just to find him a nice starting point and get going from there. We’ll let him tell us what to do.
Inoui Machin was a bumper horse of Neil Mulholland’s last season. He won his bumpers nicely and will go novice hurdling this time. He’s done lots and lots of jumping at home, he’s a nice frame of a horse and is looking like he’ll hopefully give us all some fun this season.
Stolen Silver was a brilliant horse last season. He won well the other day, jumping beautifully and still seems somewhat unexposed over the three miles. He could be aimed at the Coral Cup. He went up seven pounds for his last run, and I initially thought that this could been harsher, actually, given the context of the race, as there were a lot of non-runners, there was a lot of rain and it was his first time over three miles, but I thought he got the trip really well. What I noticed, most interestingly of all, was how well he relaxed during the race, compared to how he went before. That outing has just opened up another door for him which, potentially, could be quite interesting. He seems to have come along mentally since last season, because he’s not jumping off and wanting to tear away anymore. He’s by no means a young horse at eight-years-old, but maybe he’s eventually starting to learn!
Our Power was a bit keen when we last saw him in the Grand National, but he travelled really well in the end. He’ll start his season in the Pertemps Qualifier at Cheltenham next weekend, which will be a very nice starting point for him. He’s a very nice, likeable horse of Sam Thomas’ with a nice way of going who had a great season, winning a nice handicap at Kempton in February. He’ll also be targeted at the Coral Cup, but perhaps the National – or maybe the Scottish National – could be an option again. He’s proven that he’s got the ability to do it, so we’d like to see him go and win one of those.
And, one for luck, don’t forget about Good Risk At All. He’s a lovely type who jumps well and there’s plenty to come from him yet!