Horses To Follow » Bonnie Charlie

Bonnie Charlie

There has been a bias towards the inside of the track at Pontefract for most of the season, but the course has seen a lot of rain since its last meeting and that bias appeared to have been negated on Monday with the winners of both divisions of the sprint handicap coming widest of all around the home turn and up the straight. That being so, and given how well he finished from a near impossible position turning for home, it is worth marking up the performance of Bonnie Charlie who made eye-catching progress through the final furlong.

Dropped in from his wide draw (15 of 17), Dandy Nicholls’s horse had a considerable amount of ground to make up from two furlongs out. He was stone last around the home turn, but he made some progress on the far side coming to the final furlong before his jockey Michael O’Connell appeared to take it easy for a few strides, probably thinking his mount was not going to make the frame. The horse picked up strongly from there though and, under just a hands and heels ride, finished best of all in between the front pair to be beaten just a short head and a neck.

The race was won by his seemingly more fancied stable companion Amenable, with Bonnie Charlie having been noticeably weak in the market all day. He was useful a couple of seasons ago, he was rated as high as 109 as a two-year-old, but he hasn’t won since, and he was running off a career-low mark of 80 here. There was certainly promise here though, this was just his fourth run for Dandy Nicholls and his first for nearly three months. Sprinting is certainly his game, he had raced over as far as a mile last season, and he will be of interest wherever he goes next.

17th October 2011