Entries & Recent Form

The good form of the stable continued last week with another three winners taking our seasonal tally to 23.  Delface, Nobel Joshua and Paricolor all won in the hands of up and coming conditional jockey Fergus Gillard, whilst there were plenty of other performances of note too.

Delface Delivers…Just!

Delface was our first winner of the week when edging a very close finish to the 2m novices’ handicap chase at Hereford on Wednesday despite mistakes at each of the last two fences.  Rallying bravely on the run-in after being headed at the last, he just got the better of a bobbing finish to prevail by a nose.  He was runner-up in the race last year and was thoroughly deserving of landing this first chase success.  Unfortunately he did pick up a nasty cut so will be out for a while.

What’s In A Name?

Nobel Joshua (pictured above) made it third time lucky for the stable when winning at Taunton on Thursday.  Placed on his first two starts for the Pond House team at Huntingdon and Exeter, he was always well positioned in the 3m handicap hurdle, racing prominently until taking-up the running turning for home.  He was just about in front and finding plenty when his chief rival came down two out, leaving him to come home at his leisure.

We picked him up for just £6,000 and he is looking money well spent having already recouped his purchase price in just three starts.  He is owned by Peter and Sarah Allen who saw him advertised for sale on my website and bought him as their grandson is called Joshua – talk about a lucky turn of events.

Paricolor Follows-Up

Paricolor made it two successful trips to Leicester in as many weeks when the ready winner of the 1m7½f selling hurdle under Fergus Gillard.  Taking it up in the straight, he kept on well to win a shade comfortably.  He is clearly well suited by conditions and is entered there again on Thursday, so we will see how he is before deciding on his participation there.

Aside from the winners, there were plenty of other decent performances too.  Neon Moon shaped with promise when finishing a close fourth on his debut for the stable in a Southwell bumper that could turn out to be decent form.

Bumpy Johnson finished third on his hurdling debut at Hereford but did not jump with the fluency he had shown at home.  Nevertheless, he showed a good deal of ability in getting involved in the finish and he will certainly improve for the experience and remains a very nice prospect going forward.

Elan de Balme stayed on well to finish runner-up in the staying handicap chase at Hereford on Wednesday, finishing off his race much better on this occasion.  He shouldn’t be long in going one better judged on this performance.

Nordic Combined finished second at Taunton in the 2m3f handicap hurdle on Thursday.  Indeed, he looked the likeliest winner for much of the way before running about from two out.  He is a quirky individual but possesses plenty of ability and I am sure he will be winning more races when things go his way.

The Week Ahead

Monday is a blank day for the stable, with our first runner coming at Lingfield on Tuesday when Little Red Lion contests the 3m handicap chase for the David Pipe Racing Club.  A promising staying hurdler last term, he was unlucky to be brought down on his chasing debut last time at Ffos Las.  He has schooled well at home and he should go well here, although a clear round will be priority number one.

Lady Reset will contest the 1m4f flat handicap at Kempton on Wednesday.  She ran creditably last time out and with conditions to suit she should perform well once again.  Rossa Ryan is in the saddle.

We have plenty of entries at Wincanton, Leicester and Market Rasen on Thursday, as well as at Exeter on Friday.   Saturday sees action from Chepstow and Aintree, with the Becher Chase the highlight of the latter card.  We have Ramses de Teillee and former winner Vieux Lion Rouge engaged and they are both likely runners at this stage.

Welcome Back!

From Wednesday racegoers will be allowed back onto the racecourse (regional tiers allowing) and that has to be considered great news.  Locally it means that upto 2,000 racegoers can go to Wincanton or Exeter this week and whilst I am sure the courses would like more, it is a step in the right direction.  Once they have demonstrated that they can conduct these fixtures safely and successfully (which I am sure they will), hopefully it will pave the way for larger audiences.

Fergus Down To Five

Conditional jockey Fergus Gillard has been in great form and is really making a name for himself and with his 20th career success at Kempton last Monday, his claim dropped from 7lbs to 5lbs.  Fergus was excellent value for his 7lbs claim and I am sure he will continue to enjoy great success.  He has made the most of the chances presented to him, winning on 9 of his 42 rides for me this term at a strike rate of over 21%.

Although not an issue for him owing to a good diet and training regime, Fergus is a tall lad at 6 feet and not having to shed the additional 2lbs will certainly make his life a little easier.

Scu’s Ladbroke Success

Finally, hearty congratulations to stable jockey Tom Scudamore on his big race success in the Ladbroke Trophy at Newbury on Saturday.  I thought that he gave Cloth Cap a beautiful front-running ride and managed to conjure some great leaps from his partner en-route to a third win in the race following Madison du Berlais and Sizing Tennessee, becoming only the second rider to accomplish the feat (and one more than his father!).

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