Horses To Follow » Gatsby Grey

Gatsby Grey

Gatsby Grey did well to get as close as he got in the three-mile handicap hurdle at Leopardstown on Saturday, coming from the rear in a race in which the prominent racers dominated. He was settled at the back of the field early on by Philip Enright, stone last of the 17 runners as they jumped the final flight on the first circuit. Still travelling well but behind a wall of horses as they raced to the second last flight, he was slightly hampered in the bunching that happened on the home turn, he lost ground and momentum. Only ninth or 10th jumping the final flight, he had to switch again on the run-in, but he stayed on admirably to take fifth place. The winner Percival Legallois won well, but Gatsby Grey was only beaten two lengths for third and three parts of a length for fourth.

It was a fine performance by Oliver McKiernan’s horse, to finish fifth in a race in which the first four places were filled by horses who raced prominently. It was his first attempt at three miles, and he stayed it well, so connections can be a little more aggressive with him next time over this type of trip if they wish, confident in the knowledge that he can see it out. He competed at a high level as a novice last season, he finished second behind Mighty Potter in the Grade 1 two-mile novices’ hurdle at the Punchestown Festival, and he is nicely progressive now. He is only seven, and a 4lb hike to a mark of 139 was not harsh. He will be of interest in another good three-mile handicap hurdle now, and he goes well on this goodish ground.
Leopardstown, 4th February 2023