We have the potential for nine runners this week at Newbury, Kempton, Exeter and Haydock.
At Newbury on Wednesday Bolving runs in the two mile maiden hurdle, he will be settled in this time as he is a horse with plenty of pace, and I am hoping the trip will be ideal. Exmoor Mist attempts to redeem himself in the 2m conditional jockeys handicap chase on the same card.
After racing at Newbury we go on to Kempton with Howardian Hills in the 2m handicap which will be his first attempt at this trip.
Exeter on Thursday is even busier with five runners. Admiral Secret runs in the 2m 3f handicap chase and Mahler’s First and Wee Saxon in the 2m 7f novice hurdle, it will be interested to see how these two run as both are well bred young national hunt horses who promise to stay extreme trips. Wee Saxon has already won and been second in his two point to points(his only two to date), albeit some time ago. Sidbury Fair and Heluvagood both run in the 2m 5f amateur riders handicap hurdle.
On Saturday we take Ut Majeur Aulmes to Haydock for the big 2m handicap chase having taken him up to Wetherby last week to find there was still frost in the ground before we withdrew him.
Our last few runners have shown signs of encouragement. Run to Milan(pictured above) was a very good second in his first hurdle at Exeter and is an exciting prospect. Ambion Lane showed much improved form in the 2m 5f handicap hurdle and Bindon Mill was running a big race, having whipped around at the start and then unseating his jockey at the third last in the staying handicap chase on the same card.
The festive period will see Shutscombe Hill making his debut at Wincanton on boxing day, River Bray running at either Taunton on the 30th or Exeter on New Years day where Run to Milan will run in the 2m 3f national hunt maiden hurdle.
Early in January Dancing Shadow is back over hurdles preparing for one of his main spring targets, the Edinburgh National. His run in the London National was a nonsense, as the race was distorted by the brilliant tactics of the winning jockey Mr Zac Baker, who has obviously had tuition from his brother George! In my view it was the national hunt ride of the season to date.