Horses To Follow » Ansaab


Ansaab is a horse to note now after impressing in winning a 10-furlong handicap at The Curragh on Sunday.

The Cape Cross gelding was restrained from the stalls with a view to being held right up, but he travelled so well that he soon adopted a slightly less extreme position in front of two or three rivals in the nine-runner field. It was clearly a pre-determined move to be a little more patient with the horse here on this step back up in trip, he has tended to race quite handily in his races up to Sunday, including when he had been prominent throughout and in front coming inside the final quarter of a mile in the Irish Lincoln on his previous run. He was pushed a little wide around the home turn here, but he travelled best of all into the home straight. Declan McDonogh delayed his challenge for a bit longer than it looked like he would coming into the home straight, keeping him covered up in behind horses, and while that gave Sharalam the chance to take it up over on the far side of horses, Ansaab picked up well from in behind and stayed on really well to get the better of Paul Deegan’s horse quite readily in the end, the pair of them pulling a little way clear of the third, Midnight Music, who in turn had drawn on from the rest of the field.

Kevin Prendergast’s horse had been second to Sharestan in the Irish Lincoln on his previous run, though he was probably in front soon enough there as it turned out, he gave Sharestan a nice target down the middle of the track. Sharestan is a very exciting prospect for the season, he was unlucky to run into traffic at a crucial time around the home turn on his next run in a listed race at Leopardstown and was only beaten a head by Famous Name, and it was a good run from Ansaab to run him as close as he did.

The Cape Cross gelding seemed to improve for the more patient tactics here, he settled well on this step back up to 10 furlongs considering the gallop was not overly strong, this was just the sixth run of his life, he should improve again for this, and he has a lot of potential over a mile and a quarter now. Having proven that he can settle well in behind horses, this looks like the way to ride him now, and, being by Cape Cross and given how strong he was in the finish here, and that he has already won over 11 furlongs at Dundalk at the end of last season, he could step up to a mile and a half too. He has been raised 7lb to a mark of 93 for this win, having gone up 3lb for finishing second in the Irish Lincoln, but that was to be expected for this sort of performance, and there should still be plenty more to come from him.

22nd April 2012