Past Winners » Medinas


I am happy to be against the top two in the market here at the prices. Both are up considerably in the handicap for their last wins. I think the market has underestimated the size of the task faced by Oscara Dara, giving 9lb and more all round in what is going to be bottomless ground, and Tanerko Emery’s 11lb rise for winning a weak race at Lingfield is certainly not lenient …

Medinas has run three really solid races in his three starts this season. Firstly, he finished second to the progressive Bondage at Cheltenham in October. He and the winner pulled a long way clear of a competitive field and, although he was unable to hold off the winner, Gordon Elliott’s horse was thriving through the first part of the season and went on to run really well behind Coneygree back at Cheltenham.

Then Medinas went on to finish second to another well-handicapped horse in Fox Appeal at Kempton, nicely ahead of Black Thunder in third, who was only just denied in a big handicap at Haydock on his next run.

Both of those runs were very good, and he proved that his new mark – up 10lb and 5lb respectively for those runs – was not beyond him with another good run at Cheltenham in October. He finished fourth to At Fishers Cross and Inish Island, form which looks much stronger now after the winner’s exploits last weekend. Also, he shaped a good deal better than the bare result as he was kept right up the inside throughout, even in the home straight, which certainly wasn’t an advantage on the ground that day. It may well have been quite a disadvantage, in fact, given that the first two raced out wide the whole way and the first three all came right over to the stands side up the home straight. On top of that, Medinas was caught in a pocket after the second last and had to wait until the home turn before he could get past Kayf Aramis, by which time the first three had already struck for home on the near side.

That proved that Medinas stays three miles, something that will not be a disadvantage in today’s conditions, and we know that he has the pace for two and a half. It also proved he goes well in heavy ground – he won his novice hurdle in good style on soft ground last March too – so he will be much better equipped than most to cope with today’s test. He has a nice racing weight of 10st 10lb, he goes well fresh so the 50-day break since his last run should have done him good, and 10/1 looks too big a price (the price is at least in part influenced by the fact that Robert Thornton is riding Balder Succes instead).

MEDINAS WON (ADV 10/1, SP 6/1)