Horses To Follow » Arteus


Sometimes in flat racing, a supposed good draw can backfire as connections are so keen to take advantage of it that they seriously impair their horse’s chance by going off far too fast. This was seen to good effect at Kempton Park last Saturday in the Class 2 0-100 seven-furlong handicap. One of the 9/2 joint favourites Arteus is a horse who likes to lead and was drawn in stall 12 of 12, right up against the inside rail. Robert Winston had either been told to, or was intending to, make full use of the draw, with the result that when the gates opened and he was harried early by outsider Mr Green, he had to go much too fast to keep hold of the lead. The two of them quickly put distance between themselves and the rest of the pack, and were still five lengths clear coming past the three-furlong marker. Mr Green started to weaken quickly at this point, and although Arteus lasted in front until just before the furlong pole, he was quickly swallowed up and ultimately only beat two home.

This was clearly not Arteus’s running – he was weighted to finish very close to the horse who was just edged out of it into second, Seek The Fair Land, after beating that one on their previous run at Lingfield. Seek The Fair Land did put up another solid performance, he just collared late on by the 104-rated and previous Listed winner Angel’s Pursuit, who looked to appreciate the extra furlong here.

Granted he does not go off at a suicidal pace next time, there is no reason to believe Arteus will not return to the form he showed before this run when not disgracing himself at all in finishing second to the useful Mac’s Power and then getting his head in front at Lingfield. Jane Chapple-Hyam has her all-weather string in good form at the moment and this one should go on collecting prize money for her through the winter.

4th December 2010