Horses To Follow » Regal Warrior

Regal Warrior

Regal Warrior was a real eye-catcher in the 10-furlong handicap at Leopardstown on Sunday. The intention was obviously to miss the kick, which he duly did, and he was settled nicely out the back in the early stages. Second last of a well strung out 22-strong field leaving the back straight, he didn’t make much impression all the way around the home turn. Still fourth last at best and travelling well at the top of the home straight, he was moved to the outside to deliver his challenge – so wide that the head-on review didn’t pick him up until 100 yards from the line – and he made up a notable amount of ground all the way up the home straight to finish seventh, nearest at finish. He is potentially a fair bit better than the bare form of this performance suggests.

You will end up in the poor house following unlucky losers, but Regal Warrior didn’t have the run of this race at all, and potentially has plenty more to give. Although he is six years old, he has run just six times in his life now, twice in bumpers. He showed a fair degree of promise on his last run before Sunday, in a 10-and-a-half-furlong maiden at Dundalk last month when, just as on Sunday, he was held up well out the back, but made significant progress through traffic up the home straight to take second spot behind the Dermot Weld seasonal debutante Ransomed Bride. This is obviously his style of racing, he can be keen early on and he probably has to be held up, but he can do better than he did on Sunday if he is held up closer to the pace. He had previously finished third over a mile and a half at Dundalk, but he is not lacking for pace over 10 furlongs at this level and he could go very close in a similar contest next time if he is ridden slightly more handily.

19th April 2009