Horses To Follow » Baradari


Baradari was really impressive in winning the Fixed Brush Hurdle at Haydock on Saturday.

The Manduro gelding travelled like the most likely winner from a long way out. He made a mistake at the third last flight just as he started to move up on the outside of the leader Definitly Red, and that gave Brian Elison’s horse a chance, but Baradari recovered his equilibrium quickly, and it was immediately apparent that he was travelling much better. He took up the running on the run to the second last and kept on strongly over the last and all the way to the line to win by seven lengths, with Definitly Red coming 12 lengths clear of Batavir in third.

This looked like a strong handicap hurdle beforehand, it usually does, and it was well-run at a strong pace, but Baradari emerged as the best horse on the day at the weights by some way. He beat the runner-up by more than the bare winning margin, and the fact that the first two finished so far clear is a fair measure of their superiority over the rest of the field. Also, the winning time was really good, the fastest hurdle race run on the day by some way, and 0.14secs/furlong faster that Racing Post par. It was a high-class performance.

The handicapper has raised him 8lb for it, and that looks on the lenient side. It was his first run for Dan Skelton and it was his first run over a distance in excess of two and a half miles. Either or both elements may have contributed to his improved form, but there is no doubting that it was the best performance of his career to date. But he is only five, and he has the potential to progress again, especially if kept to staying trips.

His trainer said afterwards that he would go back to Haydock for the Rendlesham Hurdle, and that is interesting. He deserves to step up in grade, but he would be of more interest back in a handicap, perhaps in a Pertemps Qualifier, off his new mark.

21st November 2015