Horses To Follow » American Spin

American Spin

American Spin improved when switched from novice to handicap company over hurdles last spring, finishing just three quarters of a length second to Cape Tribulation in the Grade 3 three-mile handicap hurdle at Aintree and following that fine effort up with a narrow win in the three-mile handicap hurdle on Swinton Hurdle day at Haydock.

Luke Dace’s eight-year-old made an encouraging return to action in a Pertemps qualifier at Cheltenham last Friday. Weak in the market beforehand, he had to share the lead with Raslan and was on his outside, he could just never gain control of the race. He jumped quickly and fluently in the main but he kicked the two flights in the back straight out of the ground on the second circuit. Despite that, he had seen off Raslan at the top of the hill, but he made his worst mistake of the race at the third last, not just crashing through it but landing awkwardly too, with the result that he surrendered the advantage to Viking Blond, who hadn’t jumped it well either. American Spin wasn’t particularly fluent at the second last either, yet he was still in a share of third over the final flight before just weakening up the hill to finish seventh.

This was a really good run given how poorly he jumped on the second circuit, he hung in there for a long time on his first run for 160 days, and he can pick up his progressing from late last season now. He will be much better, of course, if his jumping holds up better (it was good on the first circuit) and if he can get an easier lead. They probably just went a bit quick up front here. It is probably significant that four of the first five home came from the second half of the field at the top of the hill. He may be at his best on slightly softer ground than this too, he ploughed through soft ground to win at Haydock, and he should continue to be under-rated in the main coming from a small yard better known for their flat horses.

19th October 2012