Horses To Follow » Embittered


Embittered did well to finish third in the County Hurdle, given that he raced prominently from flagfall in a race in which the hold-up horses came to the fore.

Joseph O’Brien’s horse quickly settled into a nice rhythm for JJ Slevin just behind the front rank. Third as they started down the back straight, he had jumped and eased his way into a share of the lead by the time they turned at the top of the hill. He travelled easily down the hill, he landed in front over the second last and travelled well around the home turn. He battled on well too when Saint Roi and Buildmeupbuttercup challenged him and, while he couldn’t match Saint Roi’s finishing kick, he ran all the way to the line, just giving best to Aramon for the runner-up spot.

The winner, third and fourth were all held up. Embittered was involved with Aramon and Buildmeupbuttercup in a three-way go for second, and the first four were nicely clear. This was just Embittered’s fifth run over hurdles. He was a high-class bumper horse last season, and he competed in two Grade 1 novice hurdles this season before going down the handicap route. He would be interesting if he started off as a handicap hurdler next season, but he would also be an interesting novice chaser. He could step up in trip over fences.

Cheltenham 13th March, 2020