Horses To Follow » In Great Form

In Great Form

In Great Form put up a nice performance at Punchesotwn on Sunday, the Francis Flood-trained gelding staying on well to finish third behind Glenquest and De Dodger in the two-and-three-quarter-mile handicap chase.

This was his first run since he finished third behind Portrait King (who won the Eider Chase at Newcastle on his next run off an 18lb higher mark) and Up The Beat (who finished fourth in the Kim Muir off a 13lb higher mark on his next run) at Punchestown last February. He was held up some way behind Glenquest and he got outpaced on the run to the third last fence. It was difficult to make up a lot of ground in the conditions on the day but, only fifth around the home turn, JP McManus’s horse did keep on well up the home straight to take third close home.

In Great Form doesn’t lack experience, but he is still only seven and he could improve significantly this year as a staying chaser. He should come on a good deal for this first run back, his first for 10 months, and he should be well suited by stepping up to marathon trips. Also, Francis Flood hasn’t had a winner since last March, so he was entitled to need this run a bit more than may have been expected, especially on this ground. He will be interesting in any of the big staying handicaps now, he handles soft ground well and the four best runs of his life have been his last four, two at Punchestown and two at Fairyhouse, both right-handed tracks.

9th December 2012