Horses To Follow » Cable Bay

Cable Bay

Cable Bay did well to finish as close as he did in the Group 3 Gladness Stakes at The Curragh on Sunday.

Relatively weak in the market beforehand, Jamie Spencer had him in a nice position through the early stages of the race, just behind the two leaders Brendan Brackan and That Is The Spirit and one off the inside rail. He still travelled well to the two-furlong pole but, at that point, That Is The Spirit fell into his lap a little as Alkaaser moved up on his outside and Piri Wango moved up on his inside. In the space of a half a furlong he had been demoted to second last place of the 11 runners, shuffled towards the outside and looking for racing room. Moved back towards the inside, he picked up well to recover the lost ground. He couldn’t catch the 50/1 winner Flight Risk, but he ran all the way to the line under just a hands and heels ride to get to within a length and a quarter of the winner, beaten by the bob of a head for second place by Piri Wango.

Charlie Hills’ horse was high class as a juvenile two years ago. He finished second in the Group 2 Richmond Stakes, third in the Group 2 Champagne Stakes and second in the Group 3 Somerville Tattersall Stakes, and he rounded off his juvenile year by finishing second in the Dewhurst Stakes, just a length and a quarter behind War Command and in front of Outstrip, who won the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf on his next run. Cable Bay did not reappear last season until August, when he ran moderately in a listed race at York’s Ebor meeting, racing as if he was in need of the run. He progressed from that, however, and he rounded off his season by running a cracker to finish second in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes at Newmarket in October.

It is encouraging that he is out so early this season, it means that Charlie Hills could have a clean run with him now and, if he does, he could be worth following. He has only won once in 12 attempts, but he remains a horse with potentially more ability than he has been able to show so far. Seven furlongs on easy ground appears to be his optimum, and he has put up the two best performances of his career on Newmarket’s Rowley Mile. He does hold an entry in the Lockinge Stakes but, if he is to deviate from seven furlongs, it may be that a drop to six furlongs rather than a step up to a mile is the thing for him.

19th April 2015