Past Winners » Shillingstone


Shillingstone went into my notebook as one to follow when he won last time at Kempton on a Monday afternoon at the beginning of November, beating the useful By George into second place. He travelled really well in behind that day, made nice progress up the side of the track, went wide around the home turn, took it up going to the third last and went clear from there, with his ears pricked. By George chased him down and got to within a half a length, but Shillingstone was idling and lugging to his left a bit, and he is value for a fair bit more than the winning margin, with the front pair finishing 20 lengths clear.

I was expecting a fair hike from the handicapper for this, so the 8lb rise is more than acceptable. That was his first handicap chase, and his new mark of 123 could still under-estimate his ability. He is only seven, a young ex-hunter chaser, the type with which Robert and Sally Alner have always done very well, and he goes well for his amateur rider. He has huge potential for further progression.

All of his rivals today seem to fall some way below him in terms of proven ability or potential or both. The Real Deal would be a danger if he could put it all together, but he doesn’t jump well enough for me and he would probably prefer softer ground. Shillingstone is not a wild price, but even 2/1 is value for me.