Right, here we go with our first Lucky 15 on a sort of new blog. I am delighted to start with the card at the recently re-opened Hereford. “The jumps fixture @HerefordRaces tomorrow must pass an 8am precautionary inspection on raceday morning due to the threat of frost. Ground currently “good to soft, frozen in a few places on back straight”” Oh dear?
Hereford 12.55 STAUNTON 7/1 general
Hereford 2.55 KEEPER HILL 5/2 general
Hereford 3.25 SANDYMOUNT 3/1 general
Hereford 3.55 CONTEUR D’HISTOIRE 12/1 general
Now for the reasons why!!
Hereford 12.55 STAUNTON 6yo daughter of Kayf Tara looks one of the few improvers in this C5 field. Bred to enjoy the 3m+ trip she gets in here with absolutely no weight. Trained by Richard Johnson’s mum and ridden by Philip Hobb’s claimer, Mr Sean Houlihan, she will go to post with just 9st 7lbs on her back.
Hereford 2.55 KEEPER HILL Won a Market Rasen bumper back in November 2015 for Ron O’Leary before being sold to the McNeill family (Grumeti etc) for £1110K and has been on my radar ever since. A good second to Joe Farrell on hurdling debut but a comfortable winner at Bangor and looks set to defy a penalty in this C4 2m 3f+ novice hurdle as this level won’t be the height of his aspirations. The main danger will be Jameson from the Walters/Henderson/Davy Russell combo whilst there are representatives from the bigger yards of JJ O’Neill, Harry Fry and the Skeltons but all have a bit to find with the progressive Keeper Hill.
Hereford 3.25 SANDYMOUNT We are going to take the odds on favourite here and trust my notebook. Philip Hobb’s Strong Promise, 8/11 currently, won well at Wincanton and I recorded “Impressive but looks like he wants a fence and further”. Whereas when Sandymount obliged at Southwell beating Dan Skelton’s Earlshill by two lengths I scribbled down, “Above average contest for the course and race could produce future winners. Winner showed nice turn of foot from the second last.” The price is enough to sway me.
Hereford 3.55 CONTEUR D’HISTOIRE Following on from the previous race, CDH was sixth to Sandymount at Southwell, failing to stay. He drops back to the bare 2m here, a distance over which he was second at Wetherby in his previous run. OR119 seems a generous mark and Aidan Coleman takes the ride for Jonjo O’Neill. Can’t have the Skelton horse, Stage One, even with Davy Russell in the saddle as any beast beaten at Ffos Las and Fakenham is not for me!!
SimpleSimonSays49…002 3rd Jan