Horses To Follow » Aubusson


Aubusson probably won the Fixed Brush Hurdle at Haydock on Saturday with at least a little more in hand than the winning margin suggests. He beat Big Easy by two lengths, and the front pair were clear.

This was a good performance from Nick Williams’ horse, who made just about all the running under a really good ride from 7lb-claimer Lizzie Kelly. It is never easy to make all in this big-field handicap hurdles, but this is a race in which it often pays to race handily, and Aubusson got into a lovely rhythm in front from early. He had plenty of challengers from early in the home straight, the well-handicapped Volnay De Thaix travelled well into the home straight and Big Easy made a significant error at the second last when mounting a challenge, but Aubusson fended them all off and stayed on really well all the way to the line.

The Ballingarry gelding is built for chasing, but he is also an exciting hurdler now. Third behind Red Sherlock in a Grade 2 hurdle at Cheltenham last January, he was a little unlucky on his debut this term at Chepstow, when a mistake at the final flight halted his momentum and he went down by three parts of a length to Shelford. However, Saturday’s performance was a marked step forward on that. This race has been won in the recent past by Dynaste, Diamond Harry, Halcon Genelardais, Grands Crus and Gevrey Chambertin. It can be a good springboard for high-class performers, and there is every reason to expect that this year’s renewal was a top notch one, with the ‘right’ horses chasing the winner home. Aubusson is only five, this was just his sixth run over hurdles, and he can go on again. A 9lb may not be sufficient to stop him progressing further.

22nd November 2014