Mark Howard Publications Ltd

Two more smart prospects for OJA

11-December-2022 16:07
in General
by Admin

Thankfully, racing at Cork got the green light on Sunday and it proved an informative afternoon. It was also profitable for followers of One Jump Ahead with Blood Destiny (4/5) and Hiddenvalley Lake (9/2) scoring and looking smart prospects in the process.

Blood Destiny (French Revolution) had finished runner-up on his only start for Gab Leenders at Auteuil in April in a race which has worked out well. Bought privately by Willie Mullins soon afterwards, the No Risk At All gelding made his Irish debut in the opening juvenile hurdle and ran out an impressive five lengths. Not surprisingly, his jumping was very good and he pulled away readily after the second last. While he possesses the size to make a chaser in the time, he is expected to make his mark in Graded juvenile hurdles this winter / spring and it will be interesting to see if he runs in the Grade 2 at Leopardstown on St Stephen's day. Mullins is blessed with a strong team of three year old hurdlers with Lossiemouth and Blood Destiny heading the cast. It is also worth noting Blood Destiny chased home Bo Zenith at Auteuil and Gary Moore's new recruit is due to make his UK debut over the Festive period, which is something to look forward to.

Hiddenvalley Lake (Irish Pointers) was acquired for £200,000 a year ago having been carried out in his only Irish point. The Sholokhov gelding made his Rules debut for Henry De Bromhead at Naas last month winning a two miles three maiden hurdle by two and a quarter lengths (runner-up won since). Stepped up in class and distance, he lined up in the Grade 3 three miles novice hurdle and produced a fine display under Rachael Blackmore. Briefly pushed along before the hometurn, his stamina came into play with the five year old leading at the second last. Pushed out to win by eight lengths, he looks every inch an Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle contender in the making. His trainer indicated afterwards that a trip to Clonmel (16th February) for another Graded contest could be his next port of call. De Bromhead has won the Grade 3 prize with Monalee (2017), Chris's Dream (2018) and Shantreusse (2022). Long-term, he will make a smashing staying chaser. 

Unfortunately, there is no jump racing on Monday and Catterick hangs in the balance the following day. I am due to make my debut appearance at the Gimcrack dinner on Tuesday evening at York racecourse and very much looking forward to it. That's if I can get the car off my snow bound drive way. It is fair to say my wheels are much more at home on a sound surface. So much for German efficiency. All being well, I will be back to update the Diary later in the week. 


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