Past Winners » Blaklion


I am backing Blaklion here at 4/1. I would have had him in as clear favourite.

Nigel Twiston-Davies’ horse was travelling well in Vicente’s race at the November meeting when he came down at the third last fence. That is far enough out, lots can happen between there and the winning line, but he had been jumping well until that point, and he was probably travelling better than anything. Also, we know that he stays well. He was the most likely winner at that point.

Unlucky-looking losers are often over-bet next time, which is why it is a little surprising that we can back him at 4/1 this morning.

We know that he is a classy performer. He was up there with the best of the staying novice hurdlers in the early part of last season, he won the Grade 2 three-mile contest at this meeting last year and he was only beaten a total of a length and a half in the Grade 1 Challow Hurdle. He has the potential to be one of the top staying novice chasers this season. He goes well at Cheltenham and he stays three miles well. He has a lot in his favour.

This is a hot race. Minella Rocco is the big danger in my book. He ran well last time over a distance that was probably too short and on ground that was probably too soft. He is highly regarded and he should improve for his debut, for the better ground today and for the step up in trip. However, he does have to go and do it now, and he has been put in shorter than I expected. He could well win, he is an exciting prospect but, at respective prices, and for today’s race, Blaklion is the bet.