Horses To Follow » Tanks For That

Tanks For That

Tanks For That ran a fine race to finish second to Theatrical Moment in a good two-and-a-half-mile beginners’ chase at Leicester on Wednesday. Sent to the front from flagfall by Andrew Tinkler, he set a nice even gallop and jumped really nimble and efficiently in the main. He did make quite a significant error at the second fence down the back straight, from which he could easily have fallen or unshipped, but he was soon back on an even keel, and he had his field well stretched by the time they were rounding the home turn. He did get in a little tight to the fourth last, and then he slipped going into the third last, the open ditch, again doing well to get over it. By that stage, Theatrical Moment was almost on terms, and that rival went on over the last two fences to power away and win well, but Tanks For That stuck to his guns really well to take second place, well clear of the remainder.

This was a hot beginners’ chase. The winner was noted here as one to follow after he ran really well to finish fourth in a good handicap chase at Ascot last time. Favourite Pause And Clause was a really highly regarded novice hurdler last season, he was third in the Coral Cup, he was rated 142 over hurdles, and he was well backed to make a successful debut over fences. In truth, he didn’t jump well enough here, but he set a high standard. Also, Prince Taime is a really useful sort, third in the Imperial Cup last season and second in the big two-and-a-half-mile handicap hurdle at Aintree, who had already shaped promisingly enough on his first run over fences. Tanks For That had no answer to Theatrical Moment’s finishing surge, but he beat the other two well. Nicky Henderson’s gelding didn’t make his debut over hurdles until last March, when he kept on well to win a Class 3 contest at Sandown, and he finished third to the highly talented Kangaroo Court on his final start last season at Lingfield. He was really disappointing on his first start this term, at Uttoxeter in October, when he faded out of it from a long way out having been fairly well backed. That run was obviously not his running at all. Perhaps he needed the run, perhaps he just didn’t act on Uttoxeter’s unusual sand-based terrain. In any case, you can easily put a line through that run now after this performance. He was weak in the market before this race, so it is probable that he will come on a fair bit for it. He is only six, this was his first chase and he has raced just six times in total now. Unusually, the ground was good on Leicester’s chase track on Wednesday even though it was heavy on the hurdles track. He handles this good ground well, he stays two and a half miles, although I wouldn’t mind seeing him run over shorter next time, and there should be a fair bit more to come.

9th December 2009