Horses To Follow » Splash Of Ginge

Splash Of Ginge

Splash Of Ginge was running a really nice race in the December Gold Cup at Cheltenham on Saturday before he came down at the fourth last fence.

Settled prominently through the early stages of the race by Ryan Hatch in the wave of horses just behind all-the-way winner Niceonefrankie, he travelled and jumped well down the back straight. Suddenly, as they jumped the sixth last and fifth last fences, however, Niceonefrankie had established a significant break on his rivals as, one by one, they came under pressure. The only rival who did not come under pressure was Splash Of Ginge.

Hatch seemed happy to allow the leader a break, happy to keep his horse in a rhythm. He moved up on the outside and jumped into a clear second over the fifth last fence. He was about eight lengths behind the leader as he rose to the fourth last, but his rider had not asked him for his effort, so it was shame that he came down. He didn’t even appear to make a mistake at the fence, he just seemed to slither on landing. It is a fence that often causes problems. Even earlier on the same day, Little Jon had gone through the wing of the fence, Solar Impulse and Bold Henry had both made race-ending mistakes and, behind Splash Of Ginge in this race, No Buts also came down.

Of course, there is no way of knowing how Splash Of Ginge would have fared had he not fallen, and, in truth, Niceonefrankie could have been called as the winner from a long way out. That said, it would have been interesting. The winner did finish tired, and it is easy to argue that Splash Of Ginge would have finished second at worst.

Nigel Twiston-Davies’ horse remains interesting. Only six, this was just his fourth steeplechase. Springer of a 33/1 shock when he won the Betfair Hurdle last February off a mark of 134, he still has scope as a chaser off a mark of 145. Two and a half miles is probably his optimum trip for now but, out of a half-sister to Gold Cup winner See More Business and staying chaser Mister One, he should be worth trying over further in time. He appears to be versatile in terms of ground and track configuration, but soft ground and a flat track suit him well. That said, he will be of interest wherever he goes next.

13th December 2014