Horses To Follow » Chesil Beach Boy

Chesil Beach Boy

Chesil Beach Boy missed the break in the Imperial Cup at Sandown on Saturday, whether intentionally or otherwise, though probably intentionally, as he has been a free-going sort and he had been ridden patiently, at least initially, on his previous three runs, all at Wincanton. He had to play catch up from well behind, and the exaggerated tactics probably didn’t see him to best effect. He was stone last passing the winning post first time having crossed the starting line four lengths behind the second last horse. The pace was solid, but no stronger than that, and those who raced handily fared well – the second horse Nampour led early, while the winner Paintball was never really out of the first five or six. Chesil Beach Boy was still stone last of the main group, 22nd of the 24 runners, turning for home, but he made up an awful lot of ground between the home turn and the second last flight, jumping it no more than two lengths behind the leader. Having made up so much ground so quickly, there was a chance he would weaken out of it a little after the last, but he kept on well to grab fifth place.

Staying over towards the far side up the home straight, usually where the ground is at its slowest at Sandown, would not have helped him – the first three home all raced noticeably wide up the home straight, they were just about the widest three on the track from over the last and up the run-in.

This was a huge run from Chesil Beach Boy, probably another career-best, his fourth on the trot. He is nine, but he is lightly raced, this was only the 10th start of his career and just his seventh run over hurdles, and he is probably a good deal better than the bare form of this run. He may continue to be under-rated after this because he was only fifth here, because he is nine, and because he is ridden by a lady amateur rider, but she has ridden him to his three wins this season, she clearly gets on well with him and the horse responds for her. Perhaps a slightly more efficient ride can see him in even better light next time.

10th March 2012