The first two Classics of the season have just been run and now we move on to the Derby and Oaks trials which will be run over the next couple of weeks. Churchill was a good winner of the 2,000gns although it appeared to me he got the run of the race coming down the far rail which seemed a golden highway on the Saturday with most of the winners whizzing up that far side rail.
Of course the credit must go to Ryan Moore who spotted the gap at the right time to move the colt over while others stayed out wide. One big admirer of Moore is the Long Fella Lester Piggott who was at Newmarket to watch the races. Lester is thought by many to be the greatest jockey of all time and I remember seeing him when I was a kid ride 5 winners at Brighton on horses that were never entitled to win. He just had that magic touch of making them run faster than they did for other jockeys.
Apparently after the race when Lester congratulated Aiden O’Brien he jokingly said it was a good ride by Ryan but if I had been on top he would have won by further.
Nothing ever fazed the 9 times winning Derby jockey even when he was threatened with death threats on the day of his St Leger victory on Nijinsky saying if they try to shoot me they are bound to miss as I’m so skinny.
Lester now in his eighties is as sharp as ever and this is the guy who lived on champagne and cigar smoke for decades to keep his weight down so he could ride the best horses. In my mind he is up there with Pele and Mohammed Ali as the greatest in their particular sports and perhaps the only jockey of the modern era that comes close would be A.P. McCoy.
Today we have some super racing at Chester with the highlight the Chester Cup at 3.35 over 18 furlongs which always attracts a field of classy stayers. The one I’m putting up as Howies Hottie is Who Dares Wins who is a progressive hurdler having run placed at the Cheltenham Festival.
This race is often won by a jumper and to the geldings advantage is that he has won on this track in his younger days plus he has a decent low draw. The horse is owned by a syndicate which is managed by Henry Ponsonby who was one of the first guys to introduce syndicate ownership into this country.
Henry is currently in hospital having a hip opp so if it does win he has been told not to do a victory jig.
Last weeks tip Eminent was disappointing but don’t give up on him as he was drawn on the outside and ran too freely without cover where as I have stated above Churchill who was in the stall next to him was pulled back behind horses to make a challenge on the favoured far side.
Maleficient Queen trainer K.Dalgleish – Ran well at Ascot and is a mare coming into form.
Thundering Blue trainer D.Menuiser – Finished strongly at Lingfield and looks on a competitive mark.
Washington D.C. trainer A.O’Brien – Just beaten into 2nd at Newmarket and perhaps would like an extra furlong.
Cardship trainer M.Johnston – Easy winner at Brighton and this juvenile can win again.
Ronald R trainer M.Bell – A good winner at Newmarket when not fully wound up and can show further improvement.
Back next Wednesday be lucky.