Horses To Follow » Majaales


Majaales put up a good performance to land a two-mile handicap hurdle last Saturday at Haydock. The Tom George-trained gelding proved hard to settle early on for Paddy Brennan, and his jumping appeared to suffer as a result, but the rider eventually got him into decent rhythm and he began to jump more fluently. Held just toward the inside of the eight runner field, he travelled well, moved into contention on the outside of the leaders as they began to turn into the long straight, just tracking Good Old Thyme, jumped the second last very well and came over to track Numide on the stands rail. As they went to the last Numide was a length up on Majaales and Indian Groom, but when Brennan got to work up on the run in, Majaales picked up impressively. He never really came away from his rivals, but he always looked to be holding them, in the end landing the spoils by two lengths from Indian Groom in second and a tired Numide in third.

This was a nice performance by Tom George’s seven-year-old. He travelled supremely well through the race after racing a bit keenly early on and he picked up well on the run in. Although the form does not look anything special at first glance, Numide is a decent hurdler on his day, and Majaales was dropping down in distance and probably still wants two and a half miles (his previous five runs had been over further).

Majaales seems to be able to handle both types of ground. He was winning this race on heavy ground but he has won on better ground on the flat and over hurdles. He has won three times over this shorter trip but has also run well over further. He was a bit disappointing on his subsequent run at Aintree in a two-and-a-half-mile handicap hurdle, he travelled well through the race but was just found wanting when they picked up over the last two flights. However, that race came just five days after his Haydock run, it probably came too quickly after a hard race on heavy ground, and he may be under-rated next time as a result. He was an 80-rated horse on the flat for Marcus Tregoning, he has plenty of class and plenty of speed, and he remains a progressive and an interesting hurdler.

3rd April 2010