Horses To Follow » I Shot The Sheriff

I Shot The Sheriff

I Shot The Sheriff looked very good in winning the two-mile-six-furlong handicap hurdle at Fairyhouse on Monday.

They went a really sedate gallop through the early stages of the race – Paul Townend said afterwards that he had rarely gone as slowly for as long in a hurdle race – and I Shot The Sheriff was keener than ideal for most of the way. He didn’t really drop the bridle until the pace quickened with three flights left to jump. He took a narrow lead at that point, travelled well into the home straight, and just came away over the final flight and up the run-in to post a really impressive victory.

Trained by Warren Greatrex as a bumper horse and with David Pipe two seasons ago as a novice hurdler, during which time he fell when going okay in the Albert Bartlett Hurdle, he was off the track before making his debut for Tony Martin at Navan in February. He ran really encouragingly there to finish second to Forever Gold off a mark of 121, and he stepped up on that to win at Navan in March. He raced off a mark of 130 on Monday, 3lb lower than his true mark, and you can be sure that the handicapper will give him a fair hike for this, but he is a seriously progressive performer now, and he should be able to take a decent hike in his stride. He may be even better than a handicapper, and you have to think that he will be even better off a stronger pace. He is eight, but he has raced just seven times over hurdles, just three times for Tony Martin. He will be interesting now at Punchestown, and he is worth another try at three miles.

6th April 2015