Horses To Follow » Authorization


The maiden hurdle at Naas on Sunday may not have taken that much winning in the end, with Chute Hall a scratching and favourite, point-to-point and bumper winner Moonlight Boy, unseating his rider before the start, and then racing and jumping erratically before eventually pulling up. Even so, there was a lot to like about the manner in which Authorization won the race, and he should be able to step up in class now.

Settled out the back of the field by Paul Townend, James Motherway’s horse was a little keener than ideal through the early stages of the race, but his jumping was good. He made nice ground up the inside on the run out of the back straight, moved up nicely behind the leaders on the run between the final two flights, jumped on at the last and came clear to win readily.

The Authorized gelding had probably already been in plenty of notebooks going into this race, having attracted the attention of the stewards and being banned for 60 days after finishing a running-on sixth in a maiden hurdle run over this course and distance in October. This was his first run since, his first for two and a half months, and it was just his fourth run over hurdles, so it is reasonable to expect that he will come on again for what must have been an enjoyable experience for him.

Winner of a 10-furlong maiden on heavy ground at The Curragh on the flat, he reached a peak rating of 86 under that code, and he should continue to progress now over hurdles. He didn’t wear the hood here that he had worn on his previous two runs, so there could be further improvement forthcoming when that piece of headgear is re-applied. He could go for a winners’ novice hurdle now, but he should be more interesting in a handicap. An initial rating 0f 123 looks more than fair.

5th January 2014