Horses To Follow » Jimmy Styles

Jimmy Styles

It might be stretching it a bit to say that Jimmy Styles would have beaten Palace Moon had he not been stopped in his run by Strike The Deal, who hung to his right into his path, but he probably would have gone close. Even on the bare face of it, this was a huge run from Clive Cox’s gelding on these terms to finish third, just three parts of a length behind the winner. If this had been a handicap, he would have been meeting Palace Moon on 7lb better terms, runner-up Swiss Diva on 9lb better terms, and fourth-placed Tamagin also on 9lb better terms. He really does need fast ground to produce his best. A fast-ground six furlongs, with a fast pace and a stiff finish are his optimum conditions, which he had here, and which enabled him to produce a career best, which would have been even better had he not been checked in his run. It is not certain where he is going to find fast ground now between now and the end of the season, but if he does, he will be worth a second look. It may come up fast for the Ayr Gold Cup, it sometimes does, although Ayr’s six furlongs is not that stiff, which will not be ideal. Still, he is obviously in the form of his life, the handicapper raised him 2lb for Saturday’s performance, which is fair, but because the Ayr race is an early-closer, he will get to race off his old mark of 100, and he will be interesting if the ground does come up fast.

29th August 2009