Horses To Follow » Flemensford


Flemensford put up a good performance when winning a two-and-a-half-mile handicap hurdle at Limerick on Sunday. He was just held towards the back, kept to the outside of the field by his rider Pat Mangan, through the first half of the race. He travelled well enough throughout, but Mangan just had to push him along a bit down the back to get him interested and it was then when he moved up to take a more prominent position before the straight, just tracking the three leaders in a quartet which broke away from the field. He still looked full of running by this stage and he moved up alongside False Messenger, who looked to be travelling well enough also, but it was Eric McNamara’s horse who picked up the best, he took it up after the second-last, found plenty in front and went on to win a shade cosily in the end, with the front two well clear of their field.

Flemensford was the second-string of the JP McManus horses here and he didn’t look to be very well-fancied either, but there was a lot to like about his performance, on what was his seasonal debut. Despite his overall form, he has always been a highly-regarded horse, he was actually only just beaten by Joncol in his first point-to-point. It is likely that connections were treating this race as a prep-run for going chasing, given that he ended last season as a chaser and this was promising in that regard. He and False Messenger pulled clear of their field, and False Messenger came out and won at Thurles on Thursday.

A fast-run two and a half miles seems to suit Flemensford well, his previous win was in a fast-run two-and-a-half-mile chase at Navan last January, they went really quick here and given that he is proven over three miles, it is likely that the race played right into his hands. There should be plenty of those types of races over fences in the coming months and if the son of Flemensfirth is able to build on this, his overall profile gives the impression that he could turn into a nicely progressive type over fences. His chase rating of 99 is now 4lb lower than his hurdles rating, and he will be of interest in a handicap chase next.

7th November 2010