NH Fixtures & Sales Dates

Sun Sep 23
Plumpton, Uttoxeter
Tue Sep 25
Wed Sep 26

Entries & Recent Form

Last week was a quiet one with only three runners over the sticks and while it is a similar story to begin this week, things pick up with plenty of entries from midweek onwards.

Looking back to last week, I thought Broadway Buffalo took a step in the right direction at Taunton when a close fifth in the staying handicap chase. Following a long absence, I was a little disappointed by his reappearance effort in the Tommy Whittle Chase at Haydock last month but this was much more like it. Racing prominently throughout, he jumped and travelled much better and stuck to his task well in the closing stages despite conceding weight to all of his rivals. Hopefully he will be able to build on this again and he still looks capable of making his mark in nice handicap chases where stamina is at a premium.

There were some early closing races last week and further to my upbeat bulletins on Moon Racer and Bidourey, I entered the pair in the Betfair handicap hurdle at Newbury on 10th February. I have never made any secret of the esteem in which I hold Moon Racer and I have been pleased with what he has shown me following his colic setback during the summer and the signs are that all of the latent ability and enthusiasm remains intact.

The week ahead sees a couple of blank days followed by plenty of entries at Market Rasen and Newbury on Wednesday. Three Star General, Friday Night Light, You Say What and Saint John Henry feature among those. Promising young chaser Ramses de Teillee has engagements at Ludlow, Chepstow and Taunton, while Shaama Grise holds entries at Ludlow, Wincanton and Haydock this week.

Rathlin Rose (pictured above) is an intended runner in the Somerset National at Wincanton on Thursday. He ran a cracking race in the rescheduled Welsh National at Chepstow the weekend before last where he looked likely to be a major player until his stamina subsided close home. Over three furlongs shorter and a less demanding track, the conditions should suit him well and I would be hopeful of a big run, despite the burden of top weight.

Vieux Lion Rouge could head to Haydock on Saturday where he is entered in the Peter Marsh chase over 3m1½f. He goes well at the track and we will have a good look at the opposition, ground and last minute test results before deciding on his participation. It is a race that I recall fondly following the victory of the great Our Vic in 2010.

Finally, I couldn’t let this week go without sparing a thought for Matt Chapman following his axing from Dancing On Ice after only one episode. I know that Matt is not everybody’s cup of tea but you can’t knock the man for the enthusiasm that he brings to all of his work. While he may divide opinion, there is no doubt that he raises the profile of racing and that has to be good, doesn’t it? Anyway, ice skating’s loss is our gain as we will get to see more of the orange one on ITV’s racing coverage and Attheraces.

As usual, you can keep up to date with all the latest news from Pond House by reading Chester’s Daily Chat or following us on Twitter @DavidPipeRacing

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