Horses To Follow » Gatsby Grey

Gatsby Grey

Gatsby Grey was impressive in winning the rated novices’ hurdle at Naas last Thursday. Settled fifth of the sixth runners early on behind a decent pace that Ballykeel and Bold Approach set between them, clear of the outsider Titan Jack, you wouldn’t have picked him out as the most likely winner early in the race. Barry Browne just had to niggle him along at a couple of points in the race, but he got stronger as the race developed. He moved up nicely on the outside on the run to the third last flight, jumped that flight well and travelled well up on the outside of the leader Bold Approach as they rounded the home turn. He moved to the front on the run to the second last flight, jumped that flight well, and he cleared away from his rivals from that point. He kicked the top of the final flight, but it didn’t halt his momentum at all, he stayed on well up the run-in to win by 15 lengths.

This was just Gatsby Grey’s fifth run over hurdles, and it was a career-best, racing off an effective mark of 125, on the fastest ground on which he has ever raced. Winner of his bumper when he was with Declan Queally on heavy ground at Navan last March, he won his maiden hurdle on his first run for Oliver McKiernan at Limerick’s Christmas Festival, also on heavy ground. The better ground was an unknown going into this race, but he handled it well. He thrived on it actually, and that opens up options going forward. Favourite Goven disappointed but he still beat Leopardstown winner Ballykeel by 15 lengths, and he recorded a decent time, the fastest of the five two-mile hurdles run on the day. He will be interesting now if he goes to Fairyhouse or Punchestown, and he could do even better back up in trip to two and a quarter or two and a half miles.
Naas, 31st March 2022