Horses To Follow » Trade Commissioner

Trade Commissioner

Trade Commissioner had run well in the Royal Hunt Cup on his seasonal reappearance, but he had been some way below that form in two subsequent runs (although admittedly he came up against a very talented horse in Kassiano last time) prior to the Class 2 10-furlong handicap at Sandown on Saturday. He finished fifth on Saturday, but shaped much better than the bare result, doing well to get into the race from the rear on ground that would have been quicker than ideal.

They did go hard enough up front, Sennockian Star had to work to get to the front ahead of Vasily early on, and then Beaufort Twelve took the favourite on from halfway. However, as has tended to be the case at Sandown this season, and as was the case over the two days of this meeting, the finish was still dominated by those who raced fairly handily, with the eventual first and second having been right up behind the two leaders turning into the home straight. Trade Commissioner, by contrast, was held up right out the back, he was last of all as they turned for home, and he still had plenty of horses in front of him with two furlongs to run. He did travel well though, and he picked up well between horses through the final furlong and a half, having to work his way across towards the outside from the inside. William Buick only gave him a couple of slaps of the whip once it was obvious the he couldn’t win, and he ran on nicely under hands and heels through the final half furlong to finish fifth.

He should improve for easier ground again now, he hasn’t actually won since he landed the Coral Challenge off a mark of 98 on good to soft ground last July, and he would be very interesting if he took his chance in the Cambridgeshire at the end of the month. If this was a prep run for that, it was really encouraging.

He is lightly-raced for a five-year-old, he only started racing last season at four, and there could still be more to come from him off a strong pace on easy ground. He has form over the Cambridgeshire course and distance, having finished fourth in the Group 3 Darley Stakes last October. Gosden has four entries in the Cambridgeshire at present, including the progressive three-year-old Seek Again, but the trainer has won two of the last six renewals of the race, and it is possible that it has been on Trade Commissioner’s radar for a while now. Current odds of 20/1 are interesting.

31st August 2013