Horses To Follow » According To Pete


There was a lot to like about the way that According To Pete galloped his rivals into the ground over the fixed brush hurdles at Haydock on Saturday. A really decent staying handicap hurdler last year, who finished third in the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham off a mark of 130, Malcolm Jefferson’s gelding seems to have improved again this season since being sent novice chasing. He jumps fences well, and he jumped these fixed brush hurdles just well as he jumps the larger obstacles, continually gaining ground on his rivals in the air, and having all of them in trouble in behind from early in the home straight.

The Accordion gelding is not quoted by many bookmakers for the Sun Alliance Chase, but he has to be a likely outsider for that contest given that he has proven that he can handle Cheltenham Festival conditions. He only has five lengths and 2lb to make up on Ballyfitz on their running in the Pertemps, he is almost certainly a better chaser than he was a hurdler and Ballyfitz is no better than 14/1 for the race. In the interim, he could be a likely type for one of the big staying handicap chases. His chase rating of 137 looks decidedly lenient now. The two-mile-five-furlong trip of the Boylesports Gold Cup, in which he holds an entry, would probably be on the sharp side for him, but if it came up very soft on December 13th, he could run a big race in that contest at a decent price.

© The Irish Field, 29th November, 2008