Horses To Follow » Jimmy Styles

Jimmy Styles

It is a little unusual to include a nine-year-old who has raced 52 times here, but Jimmy Styles proved that he still retains lots of ability in finishing fourth in the Coral Sprint at York on Saturday, and he could be well-handicapped now on a mark of 103.

Held up towards the near side in the early stages of the race, he was short of racing room from the two-furlong pole just when he needed to go forward. The race developed towards the centre, Mass Rally swooping on the far side to go clear of Hallelujah, as Adam Kirby sought to chart a passage through on Jimmy Styles towards the near side. Once he did get into the clear, he picked up and finished well enough to take fourth place, but he was just too late to give himself a chance of catching the winner.

Rated 109 at his peak, Clive Cox’s stalwart has been left on the mark of 103 off which he raced here, and that is a mark off which he can win a big handicap. He won the Ayr Gold Cup off a mark of 100 in 2009, and it is only six months and four runs ago that he finished second to Tickled Pink in the Group 3 Abernant Stakes at Newmarket, a race in which he also finished second in 2012.

He proved here that he retains plenty of ability, and he is an interestingly-handicapped horse now, even as a nine-year-old. He hasn’t appeared to be at home at Ascot in recent years – he won there in 2008, but his record there since 2010 reads 090990000 – but he will be of interest in a big-field sprint handicap away from Ascot before the end of the season. Alternatively, he does go well at Doncaster, so he would be of interest, probably at decent odds, if he ran in the six-furlong listed race at their November Handicap meeting on 9th November.

12th October 2013