Mixed feedback from Outlaw Tom’s effort at Carlisle when finishing seventh. Some were very disappointed and there was some despondency, whereas others viewed positive signs.
To my mind the effort here was no worse that the race at Carlisle in the autumn, outpaced before four out and then keeping on up the hill. To me Tom ‘dosses’ a bit when the pace picks up but he does keep going and the run was not untypical of previous efforts. If you think we have a problem then look at Snuker, capable on his day but race no sort of race on this occasion.
Options at Hexham are limited going forward and we are now in the lap of the race programmers and handicapper. Ideally we need a drop to a mark of 100 or below to allow us breathing space against inferiors.
The Village needs to prove himself as a racehorse this spring and we should know where we stand by the end of May and I suspect this will be Outlaw Tom’s last full season under Rules. If The Village shows the ability which I suspect is lurking, if currently well camouflaged, then we have a horse to move forward with. If not then we can start with a clean slate and a new horse for next campaign.
For all the doom and gloom, I rated Tom’s effort behind Presenting Junior as a career best. The latter was the bet of the year at 12/1 the other day! He hasn’t stopped winning and look out for him at either Aintree or Ayr in April.