Horses To Follow » Acey Milan

Acey Milan

Acey Milan ran a big race to finish second in the three-mile handicap hurdle, given that he was up with a strong pace from flagfall. He raced up with early leaders Sykes and Ask Ben from early, and he raced up on the outside of Sykes until that horse wilted at the end of the back straight. He never got to the inside rail and he never got to relax in the lead.

He still looked the likely winner, however, when he kicked on into the lead and eventually got the better of Ask Ben half way up the run-in, only for Stoney Mountain to come from miles back and mug him inside the final 100 yards.

It was still a fine run by Anthony Honeyball’s horse. He was a talented bumper horse, he was impressive in winning the good bumper at Newbury on Betfair Hurdle day in 2018 and he was sent off as favourite for the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham on the back of that run. He didn’t live up to expectations last season as a novice hurdler but, after a wind operation, he shaped encouragingly on his debut this season at Plumpton behind Dan McGrue, and this was a nice step forward from that. The handicapper raised him by 4lb to a mark of 132, but he is only five and this was just his seventh run over hurdles and just his second over three miles. He saw out the trip well, and he will be of interest in another good stayers’ handicap hurdle now.

Haydock, 23rd November 2019