Horses To Follow » Sky Hunter

Sky Hunter

Sky Hunter put up a nice performance to win the 10-furlong listed race at Ayr on Saturday.

He was a little wider than ideal through the early stages of the race, and he was widest of all, three horses wide, around the home turn. It did not make any difference, however. He travelled well up the early part of the home straight and moved up on the outside of leaders Mirsaale and Sennockian Star on the run to the two-furlong pole. At that point, he and his main market rival Sennockian Star moved on, but it was quickly apparent that the Godolphin horse was travelling best. Graham Lee just rode him out from there hands-and-heels, he waved his whip but he never really used it, and his horse came clear willingly to win by two and a half lengths, with a nice break back from Sennockian Star to the rest of the field.

This was a good performance from the Saeed Bin Suroor-trained horse. Sennockian Star is a good yardstick, he is a genuine 106-rated horse, and Sky Hunter beat him well with the pair of them nicely clear. Also, the winning time was good, just 0.03secs/furlong slower than standard, the fastest race on the round course on the day by a fair way.

One for one as a juvenile, the son of Motivator was an exciting three-year-old last year in France when trained by Andre Fabre, winning three of his four races and finishing third behind Intello in the Prix du Jockey Club on his only defeat. It has taken him a while to find his range this term, however, since joining Bin Suroor and moving to Britain. He was well beaten on his first two runs at Sandown and Newbury earlier in the summer.

Gelded since then, given a nice break and fitted with a hood for the first time on Saturday, this was much more like it. He has obviously had his issues, but there is no doubting his talent and, as long as he remains sound of mind, he could go on to fulfill his potential now. His behaviour on Saturday was exemplary, and that augurs well for the future. There is lots of stamina in his pedigree, he should be able to get a mile and a half if he needs to – he won a three-runner listed race over a mile and a half in France last year – but he is effective over 10 furlongs. It appears that he goes on all types of ground, and he will be of interest wherever he goes next.

20th September 2014