Horses To Follow » Battered


Battered was impressive in winning the seven-furlong three-year-olds’ handicap at York on Wednesday.

Things didn’t start well for William Haggas’ horse, as he stumbled on leaving the stalls. He didn’t appear to lose ground, and Ryan Moore helped him to retain his balance, but it still can’t have helped. Moore allowed him time to settle into his rhythm around the home turn and, just fourth last of the 14 runners as they straightened up, he made nice ground from the three-furlong marker. He threaded his way through traffic, engineered a gap for himself just outside the eventual third Starlight Romance, and finished off his race powerfully after colliding with runner-up Lualiwa inside the final furlong.

It was a powerful performance by Battered. He had never raced on soft ground before, but he proved that he could operate on it well, and his trainer said afterwards that he wouldn’t want it too fast. And he does like York, this was his fourth run there and, while it was his first win, he had run well in defeat there before.

This was his third run of the season, but it was just his seventh run ever, and he is nicely progressive. It was his second run over seven furlongs, and he sees it out well. He races like he could get a mile, but he is so strong over seven, and he is bred for seven, that this could be his optimum trip. The handicapper raised him by 9lb to a mark of 92, which is not an insignificant hike, but he should be progressive enough to be able to cope with his new mark.

17th May 2017