Horses To Follow » Lord Jay Jay

Lord Jay Jay

Lord Jay Jay raced with plenty more verve in the two-mile-four-and-a-half-furlong chase at Kempton on Monday than he had been showing of late, and a return to winning ways may be imminent now.

Bounced out of the gate by Aidan Coleman, he jumped really well, ears pricked, and led the field at a nice pace. They closed up on him a bit as they went down the side of the course, but he kicked on again on the run to the seventh last, and led them to the end of the back straight. However, his stamina seemed to ebb away on the home turn as Pepsyrock and Kew Jumper swept past. He ultimately faded to finish a well-beaten fifth, but that position does not do justice to the quality of the performance.

Lord Jay Jay is almost certainly at his most effective when allowed to bowl along in front over two miles. Although he has won over two miles and three furlongs at Ascot, that really wasn’t a good race and he was racing there off a handicap mark that is 19lb lower than his current rating. This extended two-and-a-half-mile trip almost certainly stretched his stamina beyond its limit. Nonetheless, it was a most encouraging performance, his best in four runs for Venetia Williams since joining from Alison Thorpe’s yard. Although he has won at Ascot, he does jump to his left and is probably better at a left-handed track. He is also at his best on good ground and, now that Venetia Williams appears to have him going forward again, he could spring up next time in a two-mile handicap chase at a left-handed track, and he should be allowed go off at a decent price. He could be another one for the Red Rum Chase at Aintree, although the shortlist for that race is getting ever longer.

23rd March, 2009