Horses To Follow » The Minack

The Minack

The Minack was well backed prior to his chasing debut in a decent two-mile-five-furlong novices’ chase at Wincanton on Saturday and impressed in the race itself. He was quite big and bold over the first few fences, almost landing on top of the fifth and pitching on landing over the sixth, but he jumped really well after that, measuring his fences accurately. Bouggler went on at the end of the back straight but it was clear that Nick Schofield on The Minack had the move covered as he moved up stylishly round the outside turning in and went on after the third last. He kept his concentration well over the last couple of fences up the long home straight and was not fully extended by any means to win by a comfortable three and three quarter lengths. There was an air of inevitably as soon as he moved up rounding the home turn that the race was over and even though Bouggler is a strong stayer and this was The Minack’s first run for nine months, he kept on well and won cosily.

He has always been highly regarded by Paul Nicholls and appears much more a chaser than a hurdler. He won three of his five starts over hurdles, his two defeats coming in a Grade 2 at Cheltenham on just his second start when he made a bad blunder three out, and in the Grade 1 Sefton Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree which was run at a ferocious pace and was a real test for one so inexperienced, and was also run on the quickest ground he had ever encountered.

The Minack looks to have a bright future over fences. He is bred for three miles or more, being out of an Irish National winner, but judged on this effort is clearly not short of pace. He has many options open to him now, although he probably does want at least a little bit of an ease to be seen at his best.

8th January 2011