Horses To Follow » Steel Of Madrid

Steel Of Madrid

Steel Of Madrid can be marked up a fair bit on the bare form of the performance that he put up in finishing second in the one-mile three-year-olds’ handicap at Haydock on Saturday.

Slowly away, Richard Hannon’s horse was squeezed out of it a little through the early stages of the race, with the result that Darryll Holland had to take back and he found himself last after a furlong. The pace was not overly strong, so he was further back than ideal. Holland had to sit and suffer, and he was still last as they turned for home. Moved towards the outside, the rider resisted the temptation to come widest of all for a clear run. Instead, he checked back inside in an effort to find a run among horses, but it just didn’t happen. He did get a gap inside the two-furlong pole, and he moved through it, but it was all too late. He got another gap deep inside the final furlong, and he picked up nicely, but the winner Shaiyem had flown, and he could only get to within a length and a half of his better-fancied stable companion.

This was just Steel Of Madrid’s fourth ever run, so he has plenty of potential for further progression. Winner on his racecourse debut at Salisbury last July, he ran last weekend’s Newmarket Stakes winner Hawkbill to a head at Kempton on his final run at two. He was well beaten on his debut this season in the Craven Stakes, but the ground was probably softer than ideal for him there, and he showed the benefit of that run here. This was probably more his level anyway, a 0-95 handicap. He is better than he was able to show here, a 3lb hike is not harsh, and he will be of interest in another similar contest, or even in a higher-grade handicap.

7th May 2016