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The one that got away to an extent was Zafonic. Injury curtailed his career but his performance in the 2,000 Guineas is the best I have seen in that race apart from Frankel and possibly El Gran Senor. He slammed Barathea, a subsequent Breeders Cup Mile winner. It was scintillating.
Fair enough Ham, I take your point about CPS. All I am saying is I would not want to take 6/4 against a horse who is known to be fragile, will be in his toughest race yet and is unproven on the track.
I suspect the bookies will take him on and he will be a bigger price on the day. And I will happily be proven wrong if he hacks up for you!
Sad news but what a tremendous legacy he has left. It is incredible to think how many top class horses carried his silks and that he bred most of them.
Frankel and Dancing Brave must be the two best horses of my lifetime and I do not expect to ever see a better performance than the Brave’s Arc win.
I always thought his colours were really classy as well. The colour combination and pattern just worked.
I remember watching the ITV7 with my father on those long ago Saturday afternoons. And I certainly remember the Oxo National at Warwick.
I really miss Windsor as a jumps track. It was great when they briefly brought it back in 2004/05 when Ascot was being redeveloped. I saw Baracuda win the Long Walk there. I hoped they might decide to bring the jumps back permanently but it was not to be. I suppose they want to preserve the ground for the more lucrative Monday evenings in the summer.
The government has denied it intends to suspend elite sport.
Given it said it was not going to close schools and then did 24 hours later, this is not looking good…
Fond memories of this race. On my first ever trip to Warwick, one of my favourite tracks, I backed Browjoshy to win this race and he did at 12/1. A little bit depressing to realise it was 20 years ago!
I wonder if Nicholls might reach for the headgear with Danny Whizzbang? That might make him interesting. Achille for Venetia is interesting as well.
I can understand putting up a short priced favourite as the Lay but “Shishkin went missing halfway through his race”?! Sorry, I know it is a game of opinions but I can’t see that at all!
Nap: Shishkin. I honestly think nothing will get near him.
Lay: Chacun Pour Soi. 6/4 against a fragile horse makes no appeal. He will find this a very different test to sauntering around at long odds on in small field, soft ground graded races in Ireland and has to be taken on at the price.
Each way: In the absence of knowing the handicap fields, I will put up Samcro in the Ryanair. Don’t laugh! I know he has a lot to prove but he had an underwhelming pre-Cheltenham last season as well and still came good at the festival. He travelled like a class horse in the Marsh. The track and expected better ground will suit him and I will not be at all surprised to see him run a big race in what looks an open contest.
Well done if you found that one.
I read an article in “Racing Ahead” magazine written by Ben Morgan in which he defended Henderson’s decision about Altior and the Tingle Creek and said he had earned the right to do whatever he wants.
I think that is a ridiculous statement. Is he really suggesting that Henderson can never be wrong and should not be the subject of any scrutiny or criticism? If so, that is not healthy for racing. No one is bigger than the sport, no matter how successful they have been.
It is curious what happened to Might Bite. It is often said the race against Native River in the Gold Cup bottomed him. However, he came out a few weeks later and won at Aintree, beating Clan Des Obeaux and Bristol De Mai.
I was there that day and he was magnificent. And the two beaten horses have hardly let the form down since.
He then had that dismal run at Haydock in the Betfair and it was all downhill afterwards. Towards the end he was a shell of the horse he was. It was very sad to see, especially the sight of him over the National fences which he clearly did not enjoy at all.
It is worth checking out Blake’s blog on novice chases. Maybe he is writing to provoke to an extent but he makes some interesting points, especially about Envoi Allen. We keep being told he is a world beater but he is now into his third season on the track and has never raced outside of novice company. Is this really defensible in the modern age when horses are not the immature, backward store horses of yesteryear who needed to be given time?
Agree Gladiateur. I also believe the better company in the Gold Cup would have focussed his mind and he would not have messed about on the run in like he did in the RSA. It was, of course, incredible that he actually still managed to win that race!
It is obviously easy to be wise after the event but I wonder if his connections do wish they had gone for the Open races. Thistlecrack and Coneygree have shown what novices can do if they are good enough and I believe Might Bite was better.
Injury is only just around the corner in National Hunt racing, as Thistlecrack and Coneygree have both demonstrated all too well. There is a strong case for saying you should strike while the iron is hot.
I read Kevin Blake’s blog on the ATR site just before Christmas in which he suggested any novices rated 150 or above should be barred from novice chases after January, thus forcing the better novices to run in the Championship races. Not a bad idea.
Such a relief to hear Might Bite has been retired.
I think it is a pity that he is going to be best remembered for nearly throwing away the RSA. Instead, he should be remembered for what he did for about 95% of that race. He put up one of the best displays of powerful galloping and jumping I have ever seen. Ruby Walsh rode Bellshill and said he was content to sit at the back because he reckoned Might Bite could not keep up the gallop. He actually went further away.
Might Bite was also putting up a superb performance in the Kauto Star before Jacob decided to put him on the floor. That robbed us of what would have been a stunning victory.
I believe Might Bite would have won the King George and the Gold Cup as a novice if he had been allowed to run. I do not believe the likes of Thistlecrack (himself a novice), or Sizing John, Minella Rocco and Djakadam could have finished in front of him in the form he was in that season.
To my mind, he was never as good after his novice season – even when he won the King George.
He might only have shone brightly for a short time but he was a superb chaser at his best. I hope he has a long and happy retirement.
As someone who lumped on Melon in the Supreme, this lovable old rogue brings back a few painful memories!
However, I am sorry to hear he has passed away. He was clearly a very smart horse when he was in the right mind.
Anyone else impressed with Metier? I know when a horse wins by a wide margin on deep ground there has to be a possibility he is ground dependent – but if this horse was trained by Mullins, Elliott, Henderson or Nicholls, I reckon it would be shorter than the 8/1 available.