Horses To Follow » Sandusky


Sandusky ran a race full of promise in the Class 2 12-furlong handicap that kicked off the 1000 Guineas card at Newmarket on Sunday.

Weak in the market beforehand, he was free and keen through the early stages, with the result that Mickael Barzalona settled him in last place, well off the second last horse. He was taken to the far side by Barzalona with half a mile to run but didn’t make up his ground until inside the final three furlongs, and did so quite quickly. He came there on the far side looking a real threat a furlong out, but Ithoughtitwasover picked up really well for Kieren Fallon’s driving over on the near side, albeit that he drifted markedly to his left late on, and Sandusky’s early exertions and effort in making up as much ground as he did into a quickening pace just told late on and he was passed by both the well backed Local Hero and Caucus close to the line.

This was Sandusky’s seasonal debut, just his second run in 12 months, and just the fifth of his life, so there should be considerable improvement to come from it. This run should have taken the freshness out of him, but it could well be that he is always best when able to come off a strong pace, and he may have benefited from an even faster pace here. He saw out the 12 furlongs on the rain softened ground well considering how keen he had been for the first half of the race, and though he lost a couple of places late on, he was still nicely ahead of the fifth horse.

If he continues to progress then he should develop into a really nice middle-distance handicapper this season, and he could be even better than that in time. He handles soft ground well – as well as this run he had won on soft at the end of last season at Goodwood – but he goes on a sound surface too (he ran a good race in a decent three-year-old handicap at York’s Dante meeting last year on good to firm ground and he had broken his maiden at Kempton before that), so he is clearly versatile with regards ground. He is likeable, he could have a lot more progress in him, and he could go quite a long way.

6th May 2012