It’s been an OK but fairly quiet week. Minella Plus won a competitive handicap at Musselburgh on Wednesday. I rode a double yesterday which was good, including a nice horse of Nicky Richard’s, Crystal Glory, which won his second start over hurdles. He’s a horse that could potentially run at one of the bigger meetings later on. Donald’s horses have been quite busy of late so it’s a case of picking the right ones to run. I’m on 110 winners for the season now so hopefully will keep that ball rolling.
I’m at Doncaster tomorrow where I have seven rides including two Grade 2s…
Saturday 11th December – Doncaster:
11.50am – Gredin
He won at Carlisle on his first start for us, the form has been boosted by the horse that finished 2nd coming out and winning on his next start. Gredin is a nice big horse and will improve with racing. Obviously he has to give away a penalty, but the track and the ground should suit him so we’re hopeful he’ll run well.
12.20pm – Fanzio
I won on Fanzio at Perth last year off a 6lb lower mark. You’d have to think there are a couple of more unexposed horses in this race who are open to more improvement than him but hopefully he’ll run a decent race.
12.55pm – Emitom (Grade 2)
He was a good horse a couple of years ago, a winner of two Novice hurdles and 2nd in the Grade 1 Sefton Novice’s hurdle behind Champ. He’s not a horse I know a lot about, he’s been beaten at short prices over fences up to now. There are only three runners tomorrow and you’d have to respect the other two – the Paul Nicholls horse won his last two and Nigel Twiston Davies’ is a last time out winner but hopefully, if he can capture his old form over hurdles and transfer it to fences, he should run well.
1.30pm – Final Reminder
She was a winner at Ayr two starts ago. Cartmel and the way the race panned out the last time didn’t really suit her – they didn’t go much of a gallop and it turned into a sprint but she wasn’t beaten very far. Returning to a big galloping track like Doncaster over this trip should bring out the best in her. The Alexander’s horses are running well, so hopefully she can keep the ball rolling for the team.
2.05pm – Tommy’s Oscar
Tommy’s Oscar is a spare ride I’ve picked up – he’s been a very consistent horse in the North the last couple of seasons. He was a good winner at Haydock last time out in a decent handicap, but he’s gone up 9lbs for that, he did win by 10 lengths so deserved it and has top weight for his troubles. You’d have to still respect him; he seems in great form as do Ann Hamilton’s horses (I rode a winner for her yesterday). It’s a competitive race and there are several with a chance but I’m hopeful.
2.40pm – Sacre Pierre (Grade 2)
He’s a grand little horse – he won his first two juveniles and was 3rd in the Wensleydale hurdle at Wetherby behind a horse of Gary Moore’s. This looks a great deal more competitive, and his price probably reflects his chances at 12-1. I’m hoping if he runs a career best, he can finish in the top three.
3.15pm – Kauto Riko
I’ve won several on him and the last time I rode him we won a Listed chase over 3m at Kelso. I’ve not ridden him since, but he finished 4th in the Gold Cup behind Cool Cody which was a good run. He pulled up in the Topham after that which is a race we can forget as he didn’t take to the National fences. You’d like to think off a mark of 138 in an open race he’d have a decent chance.