Horses To Follow » Cartmell Cleave

Cartmell Cleave

Cartmell Cleave was unlucky in the six-furlong handicap at Ascot on Saturday. Held up through the early stages of the race by Ted Durcan, he travelled well to the three-furlong pole, but he couldn’t get racing room. He engineered a gap for himself just inside the two-furlong marker and, when he did, he picked up, but the eventual winner Right Touch moved across in front of him at that point, and he had to switch to his right. It was always going to be difficult from there, there was lots of traffic over there, and he ended up running up the back of the leaders as they came together in a driving finish. There was nothing Durcan could do, he just had to sit up on his horse through the final 150 yards and allow him coast home.

Of course, it is impossible to know how Stuart Kittow’s horse would have fared had he enjoyed a better run through the race, and the winner Right Touch had to engineer a clear path of his own, but he was travelling better than any of his rivals at the two-furlong pole, and it is reasonable to assume that he would have finished closer than he did. He might well have won. This is his racing style, he is always going to have to trust to luck in-running but, when he gets the gaps, as he did at Newmarket on his previous run, he does have a potent turn of foot.

He is a nicely progressive performer now. His turn of foot was in evidence on his previous run at Newmarket, when he came clear from Atletico and Mister Brightside, who won next time out. An 8lb hike was not overly harsh, and Saturday’s run proved that his new mark of 90 is a mark off which he can win now. A fast-run six furlongs is ideal, he retains plenty of scope for progression and, while he has won on firm ground, he handled the easy ground on Saturday well.

5th September 2015