Horses To Follow » Manyriverstocross


After returning from 15 months off the track in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury in February, Manyriverstocross has since put two really good runs together, the most recent of which came in the listed two-and-a-half-mile handicap hurdle at Aintree last Friday.

Alan King’s horse didn’t really settle early on stepping back up in trip for the first time since the 2010 Neptune Hurdle, he was just keener than ideal for the first half-mile and he still hadn’t fully dropped the bridle passing the line on the first occasion. He looked to improve over the last hurdle in the back straight, and he started to make smooth ground between horses across the top of the track, but he just got stuck in traffic early in the home straight, with the weakening Punjabi falling back into his lap. He was again checked a couple of times in the home straight, most notably after the second last flight, before staying on well all the way to the line.

Manyriverstocross had stayed on to finish third on rain-softened ground in the County Hurdle on his previous run, but he does look better suited to this two-and-a-half-mile trip nowadays. He is unexposed at this trip (he won the Grade 2 Winter Novice Hurdle at Sandown over it three seasons ago) and there should be opportunities for him in the remainder of the season.

He handled this good ground well (his two wins on the flat came on quickish ground) even though the pick of his hurdles form is on softer. Wayne Hutchinson chose to ride him in front of Meister Eckhart, who had run a cracker in the Coral Cup on his previous run, so he is obviously highly regarded at home and there could be a big handicap hurdle in him off this mark of 138.

6th April 2013