Horses To Follow » Bygones Of Brid

Bygones Of Brid

Bygones Of Brid put up a good performance to win the Grade 2 two-and-a-quarter-mile novices’ hurdle at Kelso on Saturday, a race that was won by Knockara Beau last year. There was always going to be plenty of pace in this race, and Bygones Of Brid and Predictive went at each other from early up front, but it was a duel in which Graham Lee and Bygones Of Brid always seemed to have the upper hand, with the advantage of the inside. It wasn’t ideal that he pulled for his head early on, but he jumped well and had Predictive cooked by the time they reached the top of the home turn. By that stage, Washington Irving had moved threateningly in behind and looked set to pick up the pieces from the over-strong early pace, but Bygones Of Brid kicked on again from that point, jumped the second last well, and still held a clear advantage when he jumped the last before he powered clear up the run-in to post an impressive win.

Winner of two bumpers last season and considered good enough to go to Cheltenham for the Festival Bumper, this was just a sixth run over hurdles for Karen McLintock’s gelding, and he continues to progress. He had beaten Washington Irving over two and a half miles at Newcastle on heavy ground on his penultimate start, and he followed up by finishing second to a useful type in Ranjobaie at Market Rasen on his previous start, giving the winner 17lb after his rider’s claim, with the tighter track, the slightly shorter distance and the better ground not playing to his strengths. He has stamina in abundance, and he will always be at his best when stamina is at a premium. He is in the Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at Cheltenham, but on good ground the two and a half miles of that contest may not be sufficient, and it is perhaps a little surprising that he wasn’t entered in the Albert Bartlett. He would be interesting if he took his chance in the Sefton Hurdle at Aintree, especially if the ground came up on the easy side (he apparently has big feet and he does hit the ground hard), which it can at Aintree. However he fares for the remainder of the season, he will surely go chasing sooner rather than later, and he could make up into an exciting staying novice chaser next season.

6th March 2010

© The Irish Field, 13th March 2010