GOLAN WAY RETIRED
Having lost his enthusiasm for racing following a nasty fall at Aintree in the Grand National, Golan Way has now been retired to a good home. He will now be looked after in his retirement by the girl who used to ride him out most days at Tim’s and who loves him to bits and so hopefully he has found an ideal home to enjoy a well earned retirement after such a distinguished career
Golan Way was the winner of 10 races, 4 over fences and 5 over hurdles, and £96,000 in prizemoney. He certainly had an illustrious career and ran in probably the most famous King George of all time in 2011, the big dual between Kauto Star and Long Run, when Kauto Star went on the win his 5th King George – a day that will live long in the memory of all there. He ran in the 2014 Grand National and was travelling well just in behind the leasers until coming down at the Canal Turn. He won a Grade 2 hurdle at Cheltenham from a future Cheltenham Festival winner and won the Future Stars Chase at Sandown with the previous year’s RSA Chase winner at Cheltenham behind him. In all he ran 8 times at Cheltenham.
A fantastic horse for all involved and we wish him a very happy retirement with Abbie and hope both of them have many happy times ahead.
ANOTHER GREAT WIN FOR FIRST FANDANGO !
Following on from his recent good win on his return, First Fandango switched to hurdles for his second run of the season and put up another fine performance under Michael Byrne in a very valuable £25,000 added handicap at Musselburgh (7.11.14). Always travelling nicely just off the pace, he took over at the second last looking very much like the winner but then had to bravely repel the persistent challenge after the last by Capellanus (also second in the race last year) to hold on nicely in the end by half a length, with the third horse 18 lengths back.
This was another terrific performance from First Fandango who again enjoyed the decent ground that he had also had on his seasonal debut and congratulations to all involved.
FANDANGO FIRST !!
What a relief – Fandango time again !! After such a disappointing season last year we were all so thrilled to see First Fandango bounce right back to form today (23.10.14) at Ludlow in a valuable handicap chase under a lovely quiet ride from Michael Byrne. Jumping well and travelling well throughout he took up the running turning for home and stayed on really well to bound clear and win impressively.
He looked right back to his best today after all the trials and tribulations of last season when he was just never himself, with no real reason ever being found despite extensive efforts being made to try to find out what might be the problem with him. The Racing Post in the morning said you should always forgive a horse one bad season and how right they proved to be.
Congratulations to all involved and Great to have him back !!!
NELLIE A GOOD SECOND
Nellie the Elegant was a good second today (23.10.14) in a juvenile hurdle at Ludlow to the all the way winner Drifter (cost 85,000 guineas). Never able to quite cut down the lead built up by the winner she stayed on really strongly for to be a convincing second with the third 10 lengths away and the rest of the field well strung out. After slighly disappointing efforts following her encouraging debut, this was much more like it. She settled better, travelled nicely, jumped fluently and stayed on well and should hopefully now be able to go on from here.
IFAN JUST DENIED HAT-TRICK !
Ifan was just touched off in his bid for a hat-trick at Yarmouth today by 1/2 length by the potentially well handicapped Ex Oriente with the third a remarkable 8 lengths back. When he took up the running going well two furlongs out, Ifan looked the likely winner but Ex Oriente came to join him a furlong out and the two had the race to themselves in the latter stages, Ifan just losing out in a protracted duel. Ifan lost nothing in defeat as the winner had been dropped 15 pounds for his new yard since the end of September last year and was clearly back to a pretty competitive mark.
Ifan has now been in the first two in all his last 11 races on the flat and in the first three in all his last 14 races – a truly remarkable achievement for a horse running in handicaps.
IFAN WINS AGAIN
Another fine win by Ifan today at Brighton, following up his good win last time at Wolverhampton. He made pretty much all the running and, after looking like he might be swallowed up as the field closed up and stretched right across the track with a furlong to go, he stayed on in determined fashion for Daniel Muscutt to go away again, winning a shade cosily in the end by a head from cravat.
THE PLAN THAT WENT WRONG !!
It seemed like a good idea to find a nice small race for Golan Way to rebuild his confidence, if indeed it was required, following his spill fall last time out in the Grand National. He seemed fine at home and had schooled fine since and so a Hunters Chase at Southwell, in which he was about 40 pounds superior on official ratings to the two other runners seemed like the perfect opportunity for a confidence booster. Although it was only 11 days after the National, his fall was at the Canal Turn (8th) and therefore the thinking was that the race should not have taken too much out of him physically.
However, as Mick Fitzgerald pointed out on At The Races, the National is a race like no other and it sometimes takes horses a little while to mentally recover from the massive atmosphere of the day and jumping those fences, even if they don’t fall. Unfortunately that seemed to be the case with Golan as he was never that happy once moving on to the racecourse proper and just planted himself when the tapes went up, refusing to start. Such a shame for all concerned, especially as he was a 2-7 shot.
Although looking like a really nice race for him, the small field probably didn’t help as he could not get in among horses and be kept moving down at the start to occupy his mind. The starter also seemed to show very little interest in helping, which was a shame and highly frustrating when you see all the help that Battle Ground, Mad Moose and Channinbar have continually received in recent years, which has often seemed extensive and excessive and sometimes very much at the expense of the other runners it has to be said.
There was no way anyone could have known beforehand and it was just one of those things and it just goes to show there is rarely any such thing as an easy race in jump racing.
AT LAST – IFAN BREAKS HIS RUN OF SECONDS WITH A FINE WIN !
A terrific win by Ifan tonight (12.4.14) at Wolverhampton brought to an end his run of 5 consecutive seconds on the flat. Always handy and travelling well, he quickly moved in to the lead turning for home and went clear for a resounding success, before idling in the latter stages. He was again given a great ride by Daniel Muscutt, who looks a highly promising apprentice. Congratulations to all involved !
Ifan has now been in the first two in all of his last 9 races on the flat and in the first three in all his last 12 races. As a big, strong, progressive horse he also looks a fine prospect for novice hurdles and his one run over hurdles last season should be ignored as he was put out of the race when very badly hampered early on.
GOLAN WAY FINE AFTER NATIONAL SPILL
We are delighted to report that Golan Way and Michael Byrne have both returned home fine after that nasty looking fall at the Canal Turn in the Grand National on Saturday. It was a shame as he had been jumping nicely and was travelling really well in a perfect position just in behind the leaders. He had absolutely pinged the previous two fences, including Bechers, as well but was just on the wrong stride at the Canal Turn and tried to put in an extra one and that was that, as they say, unfortunately.
Nevetheless, what a race to be part of and I hope that all the owners enjoyed the day.
GOLAN WAY CONFIRMED FOR THE GRAND NATIONAL
Golan Way is now a confirmed runner in the Grand National at Aintree on Saturday with Michael Byrne to ride. He schooled nicely over some National type fences on Monday (31 March) and is ready to go.
Sheena West put him forward to the press as a likely type for the National after his unlucky third to Quito de la Roque in the big novice chase at Aintree (Mildmay Chase) in 2011 and he has long been thought to have a good chance of staying the trip. The ground and time of year should suit and he has been kept nice and fresh for the race. The fences and field size mean that fortune will certainly need to be on his side in such a tough race as this but he deserves his chance in the big one and good luck to all involved.
A FINE WIN BY GOLAN WAY
Great to have Golan way back in action and he won very impressively today (9.3.14) at Warwick for his first Hunter Chase success. Leading all the way, he and Bradley Gibbs seemed in harmony all the way, just making the one mistake. He was never off the bridle and won in fine style, as indeed he was entitled to do on ratings. It is just fantastic to have him back. He looked great before the race and he looked as good as ever during it and the Grand National could now be his next race.
ANOTHER GOOD SECOND FROM IFAN – AGAIN !
Ifan again came across one tonight at Lingfield when just finding the 6lb well in Club House too good on the night. Club House was completing a three timer before being re-handicapped (just as he had done last year!). Poor Ifan so deserves to win again and has just come across well handicapped horses in all his recent races – his time will surely come soon.
FINE DEBUT WIN BY NELLIE THE ELEGANT
A terrific win by Nellie the Elegant tonight (8.2.14) at Wolverhampton when winning nicely from Rose Kazan under a nice ride from David Probert. Leading early, David was happy to settle in behind when taken on down the far side before quickening through on the inside on the home turn to quickly settle the race. She should hopefully improve for her first racecourse experience and looks a really nice prospect.
NEW HORSE WITH TIM VAUGHAN
We are delighted to have a new horse with Tim Vaughan with our exciting Mount Nelson filly. Tipped as a future big jumps sire, Mount Nelson has had a good first couple of seasons as a sire with Berkshire, one of the favourites for next season classics, amongst the good horses he has produced. This filly is from an outstanding family and is also closely related to a number of good horses, including the progressive Regal Hawk and Bin Singspiel who have done so well in 2013 winning 6 races between them.
Backward as a 2-y-o she should come into her own next season and will probably start off early in a maiden on the flat before possibly moving to a juvenile hurdling campaign. She is regarded as an exciting prospect and all options are currently open.
CURRENT PLANS UPDATE
With the Jumps season now well underway, things have gone a little quiet for us just at the minute. Both First Fandango and Golan Way ( now with Tim Vaughan) will not run in November and December but both should be back in action in the new year. Tim has high hopes for both this season – Golan Way could be a potential Grand National horse and First Fandango has already qualified for the Pertemps Final at the Cheltenham Festival but could also return to chasing in the new year. Geminus has sadly suffered a setback and will now be given a good rest to recover
Ifan is enjoying a well deserved rest after an excellent season on the flat in 2013, when he was so unlucky to only win once. He is currently due back in the early Spring, probably starting on the all weather/early flat before heading for a novice hurdling campaign in the new jumps season in 2014.
Saint Helena has now been sold to Jim Best and Mujaadel sold to race in Belgium and we would like to wish their new connection good luck and all the best with them. Both have been excellent horses for their owners over the years – Mujaadel winning 8 races and Saint Helena 5 races and been great servants to their owners and their respective yards. They will both be much missed and I hope all their owners had a lot of fun along the way.
HELENA THIRD IN THE DERBY !
Having been unlucky in the Jumps Jockeys Derby at Epsom where she finished 6th despite the ground going against her when softening alarmingly on the day, Saint Helena was today (29.9.13) third in the Apprentices Derby at Epsom, with the first three pulling well clear of the other nine in the closing stages. She clearly handles tricky tracks and gradients a lot better nowadays than was thought in her early days. She has now run in an Oaks Trial and two Derby’s !
MORE LIKE IT FROM MUJAADEL
After a few months where all seems to have gone wrong for him, either with late ground changes or suffering severe trouble in running in races that he might otherwise have won, Mujaadel today (24.9.13) finished a good third at Beverley.
SAINT HELENA BACK TO FORM
After a couple of months where things just don’t seem to have gone right for her, Saint Helena came back to form today (17.8.13) with a good third at Newbury where her jockey felt she should really have been second but for hanging late on. Nevertheless a good Saturday third at a top track was a good performance and hopefully provided her owners with a good day out!
WOULD YOU BELIEVE IT – IFAN SECOND AGAIN
Ifan today (10.8.13) at Ayr made it five seconds on the trot when just never able to reel in the all the way winner, Circuitous, who was give a good front running ride. Poor Ifan has now finished second and 6 out of the last 7 races, winning the other one. However, he has been admirably consistent and looks a really nice horse for the future. he will now be given a well deserved break until the Spring when his owners can hopefully look forward to a lot more fun !
IFAN INVOLVED IN CHAOTIC RACE ON HURDLING DEBUT
Not the sort of race you want for a hurdling debut for Ifan at Newton Abbot today (15.7.13). In a race where just about everything seemed to happen, he was badly interfered with at the first and then had to take drastic and alarming avoiding action mid air when a horse fell in front of him at the third, losing all momentum and any chance he had. Not surprisingly those two incidents probably affected his confidence for the rest of the round as, although he jumped cleanly he jumped very left, although Richard Johnson sensibly looked after him in the circumstances and he did still finish third. Richard said not to worry, the run should be ignored and he would make into a nice hurdler. He has schooled really well at home but we’ll probably go back to the flat with him now after that and save him for a novice hurdling campaign next jumps season.
ANOTHER SECOND FOR IFAN
Once more Ifan ran another great race today (26.6.13) at Bath but yet again found just one too good. Unfortunately, as at Chepstow last time, it appears he has come across another extremely well handicapped horse on the day after a large drop in its mark in Croquembouche. After being rated 80 in Sept 2012 following a close second to the useful Rhagori, six runs over 9 months, many of which he has been well beaten, seemed a have achieved a generous looking drop to 69. The warning bells were out when the winner opened up favourite on Betfair in the morning and at drastically shorter odds than it recent runs would have suggested.
Ifan has now been second 5 times out of his last 6 races on the flat (he won the other one) and has been desperately unlucky not to have won more than once during that period.
IFAN SECOND AGAIN
Poor Ifan again found one too good today at Chepstow (3.6.13) when again beating all except one, this time the seemingly well handicapped Peak Storm, who had won its previous race off a mark of just 54 despite having been a good third off a mark of 73 just 7 months ago and today ran off a mark of only 59. His 19 pound drop in the handicap in just 8 races was achieved despite being placed in the first four in 5 of them and he clearly looks pretty well handicapped at present.
IFAN JUST TOUCHED OFF ON RETURN
Ifan was just denied yesterday at Salisbury (16.5.13) when a very close second to Intomist. Surviving a fair amount of early scrimmaging, Dan Muscutt then had him in a nice handy position throughout, before coming through to challenge in the final furlong. He was closing throughout the latter stages but in the end he just failed to get up, denied by what was a very short head on the line.
Ifan has now been placed in his last 6 races and been in the first two in the last 4. For such a late developing type who didn’t even see a racecourse until he was four, the current plan is to continue on the flat, where there should be plenty of opportunities in the short term, before moving to novice hurdles in due course. A lovely, big, scopey type he looks a really nice prospect for the future.
SAINT HELENA BOUNCES BACK TO FORM
After a slightly disappointing run just two days ago on Saturday night when 3rd at Doncaster, Saint Helena quickly put that behind her with an authoritative success at Windsor yesterday (6.5.13). Different tactics were adopted this time and, held up in the early stages by James Doyle after a slow break, she gradually picked them off up the straight to take it up in the last furlong for an impressive success.
MUJAADEL FINALLY WINS OVER FURTHER THAN 7 FURLONGS
Whilst he has often run very well over longer trips and certainly proved he stays further, all Mujaadel’s previous seven wins had been over 7 furlongs. Although it will still go down as 7 in the record books his fine win yesterday at Beverley (6.5.13), under a great ride from Paul Mulrennan, was over a stiff 7 and a half furlongs .
After a good break, Paul had him settled nicely in midfield behind a strong pace set by the in form Thrust Control. Travelling well throughout, he was able to weave his way through up the straight and was produced with a well timed run through on the rails in the final furlong to win going away in decisive style. He has looked to be crying out for a mile this season and will now probably be kept to that trip for the time being.
GREAT AINTREE RUN FROM FIRST FANDANGO
A terrific run from First Fandango at the Aintree Festival yesterday (4.4.13) when finishing a really good third in the big Group 3 Silver Cross Handicap despite not enjoying the best of runs. Shuffled back early and boxed in for a lot of the race, First Fandango suffered trouble in running and had a fair bit of ground to make up turning for home but stayed on in impressive fashion to be third with the first three going well clear of a very hot looking field of 21. Apart from one mistake when unsighted he jumped well throughout and it was another excellent run from a lovely horse. I hope all those at the track enjoyed the day.
ENCOURAGING SEASONAL DEBUT FROM HELENA
Saint Helena was a very close third today (2.4.13) at Kempton when just failing to catch the long time leader Paloma’s Prince in a race that turned into a sprint finish and was not really run to suit. Given a nice ride by Chris Catlin she travelled well throughout and kept finding up the home straight in what was an exciting bunch finish. She should continue to give her owners a lot of fun in the season ahead.
A GOOD RUN FROM FIRST FANDANGO AT THE CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL
A very creditable effort from First Fandango in what looked a very hot renewal of the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham today (14.3.13) when eventually finishing 9th after looking like he would be placed between the last two flights. Given a nice sympathetic ride by Bradley Gibbs on his return to hurdling after four novice chases, First Fandango was always in a good position and ideally placed as they jumped the second last with every chance. He just faded as they went to the last and Bradley was easy on him when his chance had gone but he was only beaten 8 lengths at the line. His jumping was perhaps not quite as quick and fluent as it had been last season over hurdles but that was perhaps only to be expected after a period of the larger obstacles.
He has now run at Cheltenham five times including three at the Festival and I hope all owners at the track enjoyed the day.
MUJAADEL WINS IN STYLE
Mujaadel showed the benefit of his recent seasonal debut with a great win at Wolverhampton today (12.3.13) when finishing will a real flourish from off the pace to land the spoils. Given another lovely ride by Franny Norton, who seems to have struck up a fine relationship with him, he was held up on the inside for much of the race but produced with a well timed effort after they turned for home to weave his way through traffic and wear down the leader with something to spare.
IFAN WINS MAIDEN
Ifan today (1.3.13) followed up the promise of his debut second for Tim Vaughan with a fine win in a 7 furlong maiden. Showing plenty of speed, Ifan had the race sewn up turning for home and, although his challengers closed in the final furlong, he won nicely.
The medium term plan remains to go hurdling once the new season starts and Tim has no doubts that he will stay 2 miles and, assuming he does, the speed he is showing on the flat should certainly stand him in good stead. He still needs to learn to settle but he does look a really nice prospect for the coming jumps season. In the meantime hopefully he can add to his debut flat success.
LAUNCH OF NEW 2-y-o SYNDICATE
WRB are delighted to announce the launch of an exciting new 2-y-o syndicate with Harry Dunlop. Sired by the top class Coolmore sire Mount Nelson she is a tall, racy athletic, scopey filly and a good mover. Her 2-y-o cousin was unbeaten last season and her 2-y-o half brother has also enhanced her pedigree with two eye-catching placed runs at the end of last year and he seems a winner waiting to happen on that evidence.
Her sire won the Eclipse and her dam was Group class so we have high hopes for this filly.
GOLAN BACK TO FORM OVER FENCES
Another thrilling run from Golan Way today (8.12.12) in the London National at Sandown, where he returned to fences after an absence since Kauto Star’s King George last season. Jumping fluently and exhilaratingly in the lead he put up a superb display of jumping and was only passed in the latter stages as the weight concession took its toll in the very soft ground but going down by only a couple of lengths to finish a close third to Lively Baron and Major Malarkey, who were in receipt of 21 and 14 pounds respectively. An awful lot to give in that ground over that trip, Golan deserves enormous credit and it was nice to see him in such good form back over fences after returning to hurdles in the latter part of last season.
THIRD TIME LUCKY FOR FANDANGO
After two near misses when just touched off in good races at Fontwell and Aintree, First Fandango gained a thoroughly deserved first success today over fences at Fakenham (20.11.12), being eased down in the closing stages to record an emphatic victory over Brady by 12 lengths. Congratulations to all his owners !
FIRST FANDANGO JUST DENIED AT AINTREE
First Fandango put up an outstanding performance in the extremely soft conditions this afternoon (28.11.12) at Aintree where persistent rain overnight changed the ground from good to soft/heavy in places for his race. The jockeys rode very sensibly, giving the horses plenty of chance to get home in the conditions and, after jumping well, a mistake at the third last was to prove costly for Fandango who could never quite reach all the way leader, Forgotten Gold, after looking the winner turning for home. The winner, it must be said, seems well regarded by his yard and put in a fine round of jumping. It was an extremely brave performance by both horses in the conditions and they made a three runner race on a dismal day an exciting affair.
FINE CHASING DEBUT FROM FIRST FANDANGO
First Fandango showed himself to be a useful recruit to the novice chasing ranks this season with a close second this afternoon (5.10.12) to the highly regarded, Paul Nicholls trained, There’s No Panic at Fontwell. Just squeezed up by the winner going to the last he ran on well in the closing stages and was only just denied by the winner, who was also making his chasing debut. Apart from a bad mistake at the sixth, First Fandango jumped well for his debut and looks a decent prospect.
GEMINUS IMPRESSIVE AGAIN
Another good win by Geminus today at Plumpton (23.9.12) under a fine ride from Richard Johnson. Leading or disputing pretty much throughout he stretched when asked turning for home to win once more in determined fashion and gain a well deserved hat-trick of successes. Congratulations to all involved !
SAINT HELENA BACK TO FORM
Saint Helena continued her return to form today (18.9.12) with a good 2nd to Enery at Folkestone, only being run out of it close home. Things have just not gone right for her this season but hopefully she will soon be returning to winning ways.
GEMINUS FOLLOWS UP NICELY AT SOUTHWELL
Another highly encouraging performance today (19.8.12) from Geminus who followed up his recent Cartmel vicotry with a good win at Southwell. The extremely well backed J P McManus horse, Cut The Cards, after looking dangerous when turning for home, came down when beaten at the last and, after taking it up between the last two, Geminus stayed on in determined fashion for a good follow up win. A progressive type he remains a very nice prospect and may now head to Bangor on Bank Holiday Monday for an £11,000 hurdle.
GEMINUS WINS WELL AT CARTMEL
A terrific performance by Geminus today (23.7.12) at Cartmel under a great ride from Richard Johnson saw him win well by six lengths. Plans to run him in recent weeks have been thwarted by the weather and he has been crying out for a run, so it was nice to get him back on the track at last. Always up with the pace, Richard took it up three out and stayed on really well to assert in the closing stages. The feeling remains that Geminus would prefer a more galloping track and better ground but he coped well with the conditions on the day and congratulations to all involved.
GOLAN WAY AND FIRST FANDANGO FRUSTRATED BY THE WEATHER
Plans to run both Golan Way and First Fandango in the valuable long distance hurdle at Haydock on Saturday (12 May) were frustrated by the continuing wet weather and the soft ground at the track. First Fandango will now possibly head to Aintree next Friday before being given a nice rest prior to going novice chasing next season and Golan Way will probably continue in training through the summer this year and may well mix hurdling with perhaps a run on the flat.
CENTURY UP FOR TIM !
Many congratulations to Tim Vaughan on reaching his first century of winners. Tim finished the 2011/12 season on 102 winners – a fantastic achievement for Tim and his team, especially considering the virus that laid the yard low for almost 3 months at the start of 2012. Tim finshed the season 4th in numbers of winners with only Paul Nicholls, Nicky Henderson and Donald MacCain ahead of him. Well done to all involved.
NO FOOLS AND HORSES FOR ‘DEL BOY’!
On April Fools Day at Doncaster, Mujaadel opened up the new turf season in fine style with an impressive win in a big 22 runner handicap at the Lincoln meeting, the traditional opening meeting for the new season (1.4.12). Held up early on, Mujaadel made smooth progress under a lovely ride from Andrew Mullen to take up the running inside the final furlong and repel the late challenge of the well fancied and previous dual listed winner, Layla’s Hero to win by 3/4 length.
TIM VAUGHAN BACK TO FORM
We are delighted to see Tim Vaughan’s yard right back to form with 5 winners and 4 seconds in the last week of March after nearly 3 months struggling to shake off a nasty virus. Hopefully they will soon reach their target of 100 winners for the season, despite being laid low for so long. With most of the horses now seeming fully recovered we are hopeful that First Fandango will be OK to run at Aintree.
GOLAN WAY AND FIRST FANDANGO FINE AFTER CHELTENHAM
We are pleased to report that both Golan Way and First Fandango are fine after their runs at the Cheltenham Fesitval and both are on schedule to run at Aintree.
GOLAN WAY AND FIRST FANDANGO CONFIRMED FOR THE CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL
Both Golan Way and First Fandango have been confirmed for the Grade 3 Coral Cup at Cheltenham next Wednesday and both are certain to get a run if they are declared next Tuesday. Both horses seem in good form and are intended runners at the Festival.
CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL ENTRIES
Both First Fandango and Golan Way have been entered for the Festival, as planned. Golan Way is in the Coral and First Fandango is in both the Coral and the Martin Pipe.
MAJOR FORM BOOSTS FOR FIRST FANDANGO
Although First Fandango himnself has been having a bit of a breather until the better ground comes, the form of his latest run when 4th in the Gerry Fielden couldn’t have worked out better. Firstly Raya Star (3rd) landed the enormously valuable Ladbroke with Alarazi (5th) less than a length away in third, and then Rock on Ruby (1st) made Binocular pull out all the stops in the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton, only going down by a narrow margin in a driving finish.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
A Happy New Year to all our owners and lets hope 2012 brings successful times for all the syndicates. The year might start off quietly as many of our jumpers are likely to be waiting for the better ground but Golan Way and First Fandango would both be potential Cheltenham/Aintree/Punchestown Festival runners. We look to have a couple of very nice prospects for the coming flat season as well in Saint Helena (3 time winner last year) and Indian Blossom (enormously encouraging on her debut and a filly with great potential). In the summer both Geminus and Kings Counsel could prove nice summer jumping prospects and the multiple winner, Mujaadel, should hopefully continue to give his owners lots of fun. New syndicates should also hopefully soon be available.
GOLAN WAY AND THE KING GEORGE
We are delighted to report that Golan Way seems fine after mixing it with Kauto Star and Long Run in the King George. It was a shame that he did not run his race as we had hoped on the day but it was a great day out nevertheless for all the owners in what would arguably be one of the greatest jumps races of all time. I think everyone would agree that it was a pleasure to be involved. Golan will now take a little breather prior to returning in the Spring with Cheltenham, Punchestown and Sandown all amongst the possibilities and hopefully he will bounce right back to form after his rest.
GOLAN LANDS FUTURE STARS
With an exhilerating display of jumping, Golan Way made every yard this afternoon at Sandown (2.12.11) to win the prestigious Future Stars Chase in most decisive style and under an excellent ride from Marc Goldstein. One by one all his opponents came under pressure as Golan Way maintained a good gallop and put in some prodigious and fluent leaps. Once asked to settle the issue after the last Golan quickly went away up the hill to win in impressive fashion. The King George on Boxing Day remains the target.
A terrific win for First Fandango in the feature race at Leicester this afternoon (14.11.11) under a nice ride from Champion Jockey, Tony McCoy. Jumping nicely, Tony was impressed with the horse and said afterwards that he felt he was always going to win and First Fandango duly settled the issue when asked on the run in. Leicester Racecourse were very hospitable after the race and I hope all at the track enjoyed the day.
GOLAN ON WAY TO CHELTENHAM
Golan Way is now a likely runner at Cheltenham this Saturday and hopefully can put last Saturday’s disappointment at Wincanton behind him. It was a real shame that things went wrong there as both Quito de la Roque and Sarando have both franked his Aintree form in some style this year and you would have to feel that he would surely have beaten them that day but for those key mistakes. With a clear round you would have to feel he could have gone very close on Saturday.
On a day when not much went right before the race, Golan Way, to the shock of all connected with him, refused to line up with the others in the £60,000 Badger Ales Chase at Wincanton and did not start, to the great disappointment of his many owners down there to support him. He had been in great form in the build up to the race, seemed fine and his usual self before the race, winning best turned out, and has never shown any reluctance at home. It all stared to go wrong when Leighton Aspell took a fall an hour before in the novice chase. Although, Leighton assured Sheena he was fine to ride, she arranged for Barry Geraghy to be ready on stand by. Then just after the next race, Leighton was stood down and Barry Geraghty was injured in the dramatic last flight fall of Grandouet. Paul Moloney therefore became a very last minute replacement!
FINE RUN BY FANDANGO
A great run today (31.10.11) by First Fandango in the Pertemps Qualifier at Kempton when only finding the highly regarded King of the Night too good in a really competitive handicap hurdle. Depsite some unusually sketchy jumping early on, First Fandango took up the running turning for home and had seen off all challengers except the winner as they went to the last. Trying 2 miles 5 for the first time, First Fandango saw the trip out well to be a highly commendable second and looks a really nice staying hurdler in the making.
ENCOURAGING DEBUT FROM GEMINUS
A highly encouraging debut at Wetherby today (28.10.11) from Geminus when a creditable 7th to Secret Edge in the very hot Wensleydale Hurdle at Wetherby. Brian Harding was delighted with his jumping and he stayed on all the way to the line. Sure to come on for that and likely to improve once stepped up in trip it was nice to see him put behind him recent disappointments on the flat. The multiple winner, Alfraamsey, was not far in front of him and the dual winner, The Ice Factor, and the 78 rated flat performer, King of the Kelts, were just behind him.
ANOTHER FINE RUN FROM KINGS
Kings Counsel today once more battled bravely when a fine third at Wetherby to the well backed and seeming well-handicapped pair, Raya Star and Golden Future, only being run out of it after the last. Re-inforcing the fact that he would surely have won the voided race at Wetherby, he had the ‘winner’ of that race, Cunning Clarets, beaten when that one came down at the last with Red Skipper once again behind in fourth.
GEMINUS TO MAKE LISTED HURDLING DEBUT
Geminus, who has schooled brilliantly at home under Brian Harding, is currently scheduled to make his eagerly awaited hurdling debut at Wetherby on October 28 in the Wensleydale Listed Juvenile Hurdle. Hopefully, he can put behind him the various mishaps that seem to have plagued his year to date.
GOLAN A POSSIBLE FOR WINCANTON
Golan Way seems in great form at home and is currently scheduled to return to action at Wincanton on November 5 in the £60,000 Badger Ales Chase. Schooling has been held up this autumn by the hard ground after the current elongated dry spell in the South but hopefully the ground will soon ease a little to allow enough schooling ready for his debut.
UNLUCKY FIRST FOR FANDANGO
A terrific seasonal debut by First Fandango today (15.10.11) in a valuable 4-y-o hurdle at Cheltenham when finishing third to Kalann. Richard Johnson reported he would have finished a good second but for being brought to a complete standstill by the retreating One for Joules when he fell at the last. Nevertheless, it was a terrific run from which he would be expected to come on considerably and he looks a really exciting prospect for the season ahead, particularly perhaps when stepped up in trip.
After 3 consecutive seconds, Kings Counsel was robbed of what would surely have been certain victory by the astonishing raising of the yellow flag at Wetherby this afternoon (12.10.11). Losing ground and momentum in the lead whilst Denis O’Regan assessed the situation, he was only beaten a nose at the line and the ground lost certainly cost him victory. A dramatic day, to say the least, but serious questions need answering as to why the yellow flag was raised thus voiding the race even though the jockeys rode to a finish (Kings Counsel was the only horse adversely affected) – clearly it was not remotely necessary in the circumstances.
FIRST FANDANGO HEADS FOR CHELTENHAM
Tim vaughan reports that First Fandango is progressing nicely and currently on schedule to probably re-appear at Cheltenham on Saturday 15 October. Tim says First Fandango looks great and has been working nicely. He feels he has matured and seems a stronger horse this year.
FINE RUN BY KINGS COUNSEL
A terrific run by Kings Counsel in a valuable early season Class 3 handicap hurdle at Market Rasen on Saturday (24.9.11) when just being caught close home by the well regarded Royale’s Charter, the pair well clear. The third was 11 lengths away and there were many multiple winners further behind in what had looked a very competitive field of 14. He has been raised 8 for that run but it was a fine run and he looks to be an improving horse. Hopefully an exciting winter lies ahead and David O’Meara expects him to make into a lovely novice chaser and he may well go novice chasing this season.
EARLY SEASON TARGETS FOR GOLAN
We are delighted to say that Sheena reports that Golan Way has come back in fine form from his well deserved summer break and she has pencilled in a selection of nice races as possibles for him early in the coming season. Due to return in October, before which there are no opportunities for him in the calendar, a £100,000 handicap at Ascot, the £100,000 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby and a valuable Graduation Chase at Kempton are all possibilities for his seasonal debut at this stage. Looking further ahead Sheena is considering both he Hennessey and the King George.
We are delighted to report that First Fandango, our new jumping syndicate with Tim Vaughan, is progressing nicely and on schedule to re-appear when the jumping season starts proper in October. A very decent flat horse he was the winner of his first two starts over hurdles before a long period without a rest finally took its toll when he proved to be ‘over the top’ in the Triumph Hurdle at the Festival. Looks a really nice chasing prospect for the future but will probably stick to hurdles this season with valuable races at Cheltenham and Chesptow amongst the early options in October.
VAUGHAN ON TOP!
After 16 wins and 8 seconds in the last 14 days Tim Vaughan has raced to the top of the trainers table for 2011. Tim has had a meteoric rise through the training ranks with 14 winners in his debut season of 2007/08, 55 winners in 2008/09, 88 winners in 2009/10, to break into the top ten for the first time, and 91 winners last season in 2010/11, which included a period as the leading trainer. With 44 winners already in 2011/12, Tim is now nicely clear at the top of the table.
SAKHEE IN TOP 10 WORLDWIDE
We were delighted to see that Sakhee, the sire of our new 2-y-o filly with Harry Dunlop, has been listed in 8th place in the top sires worldwide in the latest table of leading sires in 2011. Galileo again heads the list. Sakhee is having a great season and we are looking forward to out filly by him making her debut soon. She is a lovely big filly with plenty of scope who has just needed a little bit of time to develop this season – not surprisingly in view of her size.
A NEW MEANING TO A HOLD UP HORSE!
Mujaadel’s run at Ripon today (13.8.11)can be completely ignored as a stalls handler still had a firm hold of his head some considerable time after the stalls opened !! When he finally let go Mujaadel had lost about 20 lengths and had absolutley no chance. At The Races were quick to pick up on the incident and felt strongly that Mujaadel should have been declared a non runner. The Stewards did hold an enquiry after the race but chose to take no action.
MUJAADEL BACK TO FORM
We were pleased to see Mujaadel put a slightly disappointing run at York last time firmly behind him Today (30.7.11) with a fine run at Thirsk, finishing 2nd of 18 in a £15,000 Class 3 handicap. Given a good ride from Jamie Goldstein, who has ridden some great winers for us over jumps and recently decided to make the switch from the jumps to the flat, Mujaadel was travelling well in behind the leaders as they turned for home. He made his move to take up the running 2 out, only to be run out of it cloose home by the well handicapped Osteopathic Remedy, who had tumbled in the weights after a string fo unplaced efforts and unfortunately for Mujaadel, chose today to retun to form !!! It was a good run however and hopefully he can find compensation soon.
FANTASTIC WIN BY SAINT HELENA!
A terrific win in a valuable Class 3 handicap by Saint Helena tonight at Ffos Las (28.7.11),under a lovely ride from John Fahy. Always handy and travelling well, she took up the running two out and stayed on resolutely when pressed in the final furlong by the in-form Mark Johnston trained Plattsburgh. It was a thrilling race and produced a good finish and, despite it being an evening meeting and a long way from most, a number of her owners were able to get there and a great time was had by all! She is an imporving type, that’s now her third win this season and she should continue to give her onwers a lot of fun. The vaulable £65,000 Melrose handicap at York on Ebor day could be her next run.
TOMBELLINI BACK TO FORM
It was great to see Tombellini return to form today at Catterick when running a very creditable second to Northern Bolt. The ground had changed to soft and David Nicholls was delighted with Tombellini’s run having previously trained the winner when it was rated 85 – with it now rated only 60 and a true soft ground horse he felt Tombellini had run a very good race. Andrew Mullen was also pleased with the run and feels that Tombellini is very adaptable and should be competitive at either 6, 7 or 8 furlongs.
EXCITING NEW TIM VAUGHAN SYNDICATE
We are delighted to announce our new syndicate with Tim Vaughan in the very useful novice hurdler, First Fandango. A winner on the flat ((RPR 85) he was bought go hurdling last winter for £60,000 and quickly showed himself to be one of the top novices, winning his first two races. Said by Tim to be over the top after a long season when unplaced in the Triumph at the festival, he looks a fine prospect for the coming Jumps season and, as a stayer on the flat, is likely to benefit from being stepped up in trip this winter. Considered by his trainer to be a fine chasing prospect in time, he will be kept to hurdles this season and we have high hopes for him.
DAVID O’MEARA CONTINUES IMPRESSIVE FORM
The highly regarding young trainer, David O’Meara, trainer of Kings Counsel, continues in fantastic form in his first full season training. He has now had 7 winners in the last 10 days, as well as sending out the Group 2 Yorkshire Cup second at York, the revitalised Blue Bajan. Blue Bajan next heads to Sandown tomorrow night for the Group 2 Henry II Stakes.
KING’S COUNSEL WINS IMPRESSIVELY
Congratulations to Kings Counsel and the syndicate on another fine win today (24.5.11) at Ripon, under a great ride from Danny Tudhope. Making all and travelling well, he was never really threatened and won pretty much unchallenged by 3 lengths from Fossgate, in the style of an improving horse.
SAKHEE NO LONGER A SECRET!
Another big day for Sakhee today (15.5.11) when he sired the winner of the French 2,000 Guineas with Tin Horse. Tin Horse won nicely and looks to have a big season ahead.
SAINT HELENA RUNS WELL IN OAKS TRIAL
Saint Helena today (7.5.11) ran a highly creditable race in the Lingfield Oaks Trial finishing fifth to Zain Al Boldan. Despite not handling the hill, it still looked like she might be in the first three a furlong out before just being run out of it late on.
MUJAADEL COMPLETES THE DOUBLE
Following Tombellini’s win earlier in the day, Mujaadel made it a quick double with an even more facile win at Catterick this evening (3.5.11). Given a lovely ride by Michael O’Connell, who quickly extricated him from what looked a slightly tricky position turning for home, he was always travelling well and took up the running from stable companion, George Benjamin, a furlong out and quickly pulled clear in imperious fashion to win going away. It was a hugely impressive victory and maybe this could really be his season.
TOMBELLINI FLIES HOME
A fantastic win today (3.5.11) by Tombellini who led from start to finish at Newcastle to win unchallenged by an ever increasing 5 lengths. Under a lovely ride from Andrew Mullen, Tombellini was finally able to translate his promise into action and this should have done his confidence the world of good. Hopefully he should now give his owners plenty lot of fun this summer.
ANOTHER WIN FOR SAINT HELENA
Saint Helena won her second race on the trot today (16.4.11)at Leicester in a walkover after none of the other entries were declared. On a lovely day at the track the formalities were completed and the owners were then duly presented with the Trophy for the race. She also won the best turned out award!
KINGS COUNSEL GAINS DESERVED SUCCESS
Kings Counsel won in impressive style today (13.4.11) at Carrick under a great ride from Danny Tudhope. Always handy, he set sail for home 3 furlongs out and he stayed on in determined fashion. It was a much deserved success after just being touched off in two very close finishes over hirdles recently. Kings Counsel certainly seemed to appreciate the step up in trip and this should now open up many more opportunities for him both on the flat and over jumps.
ENCOURAGING SEASONAL DEBUT FOR MUJAADEL
Mujaadel finished a close 3rd on his seasonal debut today at Thirsk (9.4.11). Paul Mulrennan was delighted with him and it was a highly encouraging reappearance which augurs well for the season ahead.
GOLAN AMAZES IN MILDMAY
On a lovely warm Ladies Day at Aintree and in a terrific setting and atmosphere, Golan Way was a very close and gallant 3rd in the Grade 2 Mildmay Novices Chase at Aintree (8.4.11) today, but that does not tell half the story. Although he made some sensational jumps, unfortunately he also made two huge errors which both he and his jockey, Leighton Aspell, did astonishingly well to survive. Amazingly, despite this, and losing two shoes in the process, he was still right there going to the last and stayed on in outstanding fashion right to the line to only lose out by a couple of lengths to Quito de la Roque with Festival close 3rd Wayward Prince 4 lengths back in fourth. He was much praised after the race by TV and Racing Channel reviewers and won many admirers on the day. With most of his owners in attendance, hopefully it was an exciting and memorable day for all.
SAINT HELENA WINS IN GREAT STYLE
After two near misses, Saint Helena gained a much deserved success in a maiden at Wolverhampton tonight (17.3.11) when coming with a well timed challenge to take it up inside the final furlong and win going away. Given a lovely ride by Chris Catlin, she was able to break well from her wide draw and move into a nice position, just in behind the leaders. Travelling well throughout she picked up nicely when the pace quickened and came to challenge the well regarded, and strongly fancied, See the Smile, a furlong out. After a brief battle Helena quickly asserted to win in fine style by a length and a half with the third no less than 12 lengths back. Chris was naturally delighted with her and she should hopefully be a lot of fun for her owners in the coming turf season. Congratulations to Saint Helena and all the syndicate.