CARLISLE – Thursday 5th March
Going – Heavy (Soft in places)
A busy end to the week commencing with a day chasing at Carlisle, then two days at Ayr followed by an additional card at Kelso.
Another slog in the mud here, as has been the case for much of the season. The heavy ground meant that the first and third fences out in the country were omitted.
2.10 2m 0-115 Novices’ Chase
Only five runners in this ratings limited novice event, but a decent little field nevertheless and a few pointers for the future.
BANOGE won a moderate event at Sedgefield first time over fences and seemed to step up on that here. He led going comfortably two out and stayed on up the hill. The conditions didn’t trouble him and it seems likely there is more to come.
ET MAINTENANT ran to pretty much the form of his fourth in a course and distance handicap last time. His level seems set and he looks the measure here.
ACTION STRASSE showed promise on his chasing debut, leading to before four out then being held from two out. He should learn from this outing and I’d expect him to be competitive at this sort of level.
WORK BOY had hinted at ability over hurdles at Southwell last time and showed up well enough to suggest that he may make a chaser. He came to racing late so ahs few miles on the clock for an eight-year-old.
TEENANDO had fifteen pounds to find with the principals here, but having pulled too hard he had an uphill task, fading from the bottom of the slope. He’s better off in handicaps and should not be written off yet.
2.40 2m 5f Class 4 Beginners’ Chase
LA PANTERA ROSA has taken a time to fulfil promise, but stayed on to win what looks a moderate event. It’s the first time he’s run on heavy ground, so that could be the key.
CHECKERBOARD led until the flat before giving way. A fair effort and he looks below his 109 hurdles mark over fences so far.
TARTAN SNOW challenged up the straight on his chasing debut, but looked just held when falling at the last. He has a bit to find to match his 126 hurdling mark.
WEE GEORGE ran as well as could be expected against superior rated opponents.
This looks a last throw of the dice for INDY MOOD who didn’t get competitive.
BENBEOCH is let down by his jumping and finished well beaten.
LEGAL JOY has been poor over jumps and was pulled up here.
3.15 3m ½ f Class 3 Novices’ Chase
No more than a nice school round for JAUNTY FLIGHT who is stones better than the others. It should give her plenty of confidence.
MINSTER ABBI plugged on for second.
CUTE N YOU KNOW IT lost touch from three out and needs a more realistic task.
BACK TO BILLS, an Irish point winner coming off a 12-month break, had no chance from four out. He probably needed the race and the jury is out, though current evidence does not favour him.
3.45 3m 2f 0-110 Handicap Chase (15 fences)
SUPER ROAD TRAIN is not one who will do things quickly but he jumps well and just gallops on, and his staying power won the day here. He has sound record round here and the course plays to his strengths. He is entered with a penalty in the ‘Hexham four miler’ during Cheltenham and since his rider takes off the penalty with his allowance it could be his event.
ITS A CLASSIC was very tired when jacking it in over this trip at Fontwell. However, there was no such problem this time and he had every chance at the last only to find the winner too strong. He’s in good form and should find a race.
SUPREME’S LEGACY led until the tenth at which point he came under pressure. He found it tough going up the hill but inherited third on the run-in.
MANOUBI was held up and plugged on up the straight to finish fourth. This distance round here looks a bit tough for him in these conditions.
PADDY’S TERN never made an impact and has yet to do so over fences.
MAGE D’ESTURVAL led the field from the tenth to the twelfth but dropped away up the final slog.
BALLYGALLEY BOB has found it hard to recapture last season’s chase form. He never got into a competitive position.
HEVER ROAD has pulled up twice since returning from a long break.
MITCHEL HENRY had a hard race here last time and this may have left its mark since he was never going and pulled up.
4.20 3m ½ f -0-90 Handicap Chase
SMART THINKER has run a succession of decent races recently. Given a six-week break after slogging round Towcester, he showed once again he can handle an uphill finish, staying on to catch the idling winner close home.
THE MAYSTONE made a real impact on his chasing debut. He jumped well and looked all over the winner approaching the last. Once in front it seemed he felt he had done enough, and Smart Thinker picked him off in the shadow of the post. Nevertheless a good effort from one so lightly raced, and he must surely pick up a race in time.
SUPERROLLERCOASTER stretched the field going to four out, but found his exertions taking their toll two out. This was a significant improvement on his previous six efforts, and the fact that his rating now allows a crack at this class will help in future.
SCOTT’S MILL raced prominently to four out then weakened.
MISTRAL DE LA COUR’s best efforts have been over shorter distances and he didn’t see out the trip.
INSTANT SHOT had a tough task here on handicap debut and made no show.
HOLLOWS MIST comes up with occasional bit of form in lowly handicaps, but didn’t get competitive on this occasion.
HIGH FIVE is another who is a capable stayer at this level on his day, but he’s been way off his game on recent runs.
TIME TO REFLECT was well beaten in a hunter chase first time, and didn’t last far past halfway here.
HERBIE’s jumping let him down once again. He’s not a safe conveyance.
FIGHT THE FEELING added another P to his collection of letters and has shown nothing significant for some time.
ANSHABIL had a two race purple patch back in 2006, but has been a sluggard since.
4.50 2m 0-100 Handicap Chase
BAMBY won a couple of hurdles last year and improved on recent hurdle form to make a winning chase debut. He jumped well enough and came clear up the hill. Previous history suggests it may pay to oppose a repeat.
NORMINSTER recorded another sound effort in what has been a decent season. He’s handicapped to his mark, but runs his race when coming to here or Hexham. His trainer sticks to local tracks, Carlisle, Ayr, Hexham, Newcastle and Kelso, and has a fine record from a string of moderate ability.
The enigmatic LERIDA probably ran to her best in third but isn’t one to trust.
THATLLDOFORME ran well to two out then could only muster one pace. He looks happier on a less testing track.
PISTOL BASC performed as well as he has over fences, but fifth place sums up his limited ability.
HOLLOWS MILL has run well here a couple of times this season, but doesn’t win often these days and mixes the good stuff with some poor efforts. Today was not his day.
BOG OAK showed a glimmer but two runs back but seems to be going backwards.
Triple Midlands winner THIEVERY looked an interesting placement from Henry Daly, but had nothing to offer from four out.
DUKE OF MALFI has gone to pieces since a win at Hexham in November.
STORMY BEECH needs to be in front and doesn’t show an interest if, as was the case here, he can’t dictate.
ISAN made mistakes and pulled up before the final hill. He’s shown no aptitude for jump racing date.
ROYAL GLEN was making no progress when coming a real pearler four out. I hope she was unscathed.