Horses To Follow » Bensalem


It is difficult to argue that Bensalem would not have gone close in the William Hill Trophy had he not come down at the second last. Kicked off out the back, he actually made a mistake at the first fence, and was stone last of the 24 runners racing away from the stands first time. It was the first of several mistakes that Alan King’s gelding made through the race, but he still moved through his field nicely and travelled really well down the hill to the third last. He was one of just two horses still on the bridle going to the second last, and he is a horse who stays well, so you have to think that he would have at least been involved in the finish, had he not got that fence wrong, hampered a little by the ultimate winner Chief Dan George, who jumped across him a little, and come down.

Bensalem remains a hugely exciting staying chaser. He is still only seven, has run just five times over fences, and he remains hugely progressive. He is by Turtle Island, so natural inclination is to think that he is best suited by cut in the ground, but he was handling the goodish ground at Cheltenham well. He is remains potentially really well handicapped on a mark of 143, and he will be really interesting wherever he goes next.

16th March 2010

© The Sunday Times, 28th March 2010