Horses To Follow » Real Stone

Real Stone

It was difficult not to be impressed with the performance that Real Stone put up in winning the two-mile handicap chase at Haydock on Saturday. He didn’t have that much to beat in the end, it was only a five-horse race and his two main market rivals Cheddleton and Pay The Piper under-performed, and it was left to the exposed 10-year-old Daly Tiger to chase him home. That said, he couldn’t have been much more impressive visually than he was in winning, he sauntered to victory and the time was very good, 0.06secs/furlong faster than Racing Post par. He probably could have gone faster too.

Dan Skelton’s horse is eight rising nine now, but this was just his sixth chase, so there could still be more to come. It was a nice step forward on his seasonal debut at Aintree on his first run back since a wind operation, when he was weak in the pre-race market. The handicapper raised him by 8lb for this to a mark of 131, but he is rated 130 over hurdles, and that is a chase mark off which he will remain of interest. This was a nice step forward from his seasonal return at Aintree earlier this month, when he was weak in the market, and there is every chance that he can step forward again. His trainer said afterwards that he has to go left-handed, but he will be of interest wherever he goes next. He is still in the 0-140 category, but he could step up in grade too. He is entered in the Jim Joel Memorial Trophy at Newbury on Saturday, and he will be of interest if he lines up in that.

Haydock, 25th November 2023