Horses To Follow » Forgotten Voice

Forgotten Voice

Forgotten Voice put up a decent performance in the Henry VII Stakes at Sandown on Thursday evening.

Nicky Henderson’s horse was really weak in the pre-race market. Put in at as short as 7/1 and 8/1 the previous evening, he drifted to 14/1 and 16/1 before the on-course market opened, and he continued to drift, going off at an SP of 20/1. His performance belied his market weakness though. Settled last of the seven runners through the early stages of the race by Jamie Spencer, he travelled well to the top of the home straight when Vent De Force increased the pace from the front. He was still last as they passed the three-furlong pole, but he was only being niggled along hands and heels by Spencer, and he was only about four lengths behind the leader. He did get caught a little flat-footed at the two-furlong pole, but he continued to keep on among traffic towards the far side. Switched to the outside deep inside the final furlong, he continued to stay on all the way to the line. He only finished sixth of the seven runners in the end, but he was only beaten a total of a little over three lengths by the winner Vent De Force, and he was only two lengths behind the runner-up Trip To Paris.

The Danehill Dancer gelding is 10 now, but this run suggests that he still retains a lot of ability. Third, just four lengths behind The New One in a listed hurdle at Kempton last October, this was his first run since he had finished a close-up fifth behind Purple Bay in the Elite Hurdle at Wincanton in early November, and it was his first run on the flat since he contested the Lonsdale Cup at York last August, when he finished within four lengths of the winner Pale Mimosa. He proved here that he could be competitive over two miles, but it may still be that he is at his best over a mile and six furlongs or even over a mile and a half, as long as he has his favoured good or fast ground.

Winner of the Wolferton Handicap at Royal Ascot in 2013, and of the Group 3 Glorious Stakes at Glorious Goodwood two weeks later, we know that he goes well at those two tracks, so he will be interesting in whatever races he contests at those two midsummer meetings. He is also in the Northumberland Plate, and he would be interesting if he took his chance in that.

The handicapper dropped him 2lb to a mark of 106, which was generous. That mark is just 1lb higher than the mark off which he won the Wolferton Handicap two years ago, and it is 9lb lower than his peak.

28th May 2015