Horses To Follow » Joe Jo Star

Joe Jo Star

Joe Jo Star ran a nice race to finish second to Long Run in the Kingmaker Chase at Warwick on Saturday. Setting off last of the five runners on the inside, he jumped well, with the exception of a fairly bad mistake at the first of the five fences down the far side. He couldn’t really go with King Edmund and Long Run when they quickened towards the end of the back straight, but Aidan Coleman wasn’t unduly hard on him, and he did stay on well over the final two fences to pass Take The Breeze and just get up and do King Edmund for second place on the line.

There is a sense that the bare form of this performance may flatter Richard Fahey’s gelding, he couldn’t get close to Long Run and it did appear that he just stayed on better than King Edmund, who had possibly exhausted himself by trying to put it up to Long Run from so far out. However, there was still a lot to like about the manner in which the son of Piccolo travelled and jumped, and the way in which he kept on over the final two fences up the home straight under Coleman, who wasn’t hard on him once it was obvious that he couldn’t win the race. Richard Fahey’s gelding was no better than ordinary on the flat, despite winning five times, but he was better over hurdles, winning the Swinton Hurdle at Haydock last spring off a mark of 129, and it looks like he may be even better again over fences. This was just his second chase, but he wasn’t disgraced on his chasing debut just a week previously at Doncaster, despite finishing a well-beaten fourth. The first three horses that day where Woolcombe Folly, I’m Delilah and Mad Max, all highly talented two-mile novice chasers. The son of Piccolo doesn’t have any lofty Cheltenham engagements as yet, but if he showed up in the Grand Annual, or in the Red Rum Chase at Aintree, off a mark that was close to his current hurdles mark of 137, then he would be of interest.

14th February 2010

© The Irish Field, 20th February 2010