Mark Howard Publications Ltd

Thursday Review

21-April-2022 18:55
in General
by Admin

The Antarctic (6/4) provided the Ballydoyle Juveniles section in Ahead On The Flat with another winner at Tipperary on Thursday. The grey son of Dark Angel is a full brother to top class sprinter Battaash and was bought for 750,000gns as a yearling. Ridden by Ryan Moore, Aidan O'Brien's runner was always to the fore and he battled on gamely to beat the more experienced Wodao by half a length with three and a half lengths back to the third. In all likelihood, he will appreciate drier conditions in the future and it will be interesting to see if he is part of the Ballydoyle team for Royal Ascot.

Raadobarg (5/6) was highlighted as a horse to follow in the Significant Sales section in AOTF and he made it two from two since joining Johnny Murtagh when leading close home in the seven and a half furlongs event which rounded off the meeting. The four year old was a three times winner for Roger Varian last season, including the Silver Bowl at Haydock Park. Acquired for 150,000gns in October, he won the Irish Lincolnshire at the Curragh off a mark of 98 in late March. Withdrawn from a Listed event at Leopardstown earlier this month on account of the drying ground, he stayed on well here to reel in Lust before pulling away for a length and a quarter win. Expect the son of Night of Thunder to be competitive in Pattern races this year, provided there is some ease underfoot.

Earlier on the same card, it was frustrating to see Blind Beggar edged out late on in the five furlongs handicap. Ger Lyons' new recruit is also included in the Significant Sales section despite only winning one of his thirteen races for Richard Fahey. He showed a good level of form though, including when finishing fourth at York's Ebor Festival last summer. Well supported on his first run for his new connections, the Equiano gelding showed plenty of speed early on and looked the most likely winner approaching the final furlong. Run out of it by 12/1 chance Shelly Banks, the winner had a fitness advantage but it shouldn't be long before the four year old goes one better.

Elsewhere, congratulations to Donald McCain who celebrated his 154th winner of the campaign - a personal best which betters his total of 153 during the 2011/2012 season - when Durragh won the finale at Perth. It is a tremendous effort considering the yard was badly hit by the withdrawal of the Rooney horses in late 2015. Donald has gradually rebuilt his team and has a number of promising youngsters for next term. Active at the sales in recent months, the quality of the stable should continue to grow in the coming seasons. I am delighted for him.

Finally, an eyecatcher from Thursday's action. Grant Tuer had a superb year in 2021 with 49 winners but the Northallerton trainer is currently enduring a frustrating spell. Without a winner in 37 days, the yard have had three runners-up during the last fortnight. However, the tide will turn soon and, if Mersea's debut at Beverley is anything to go by, it won't be long before the Born To Sea filly makes a contribution. A cheap buy owned by Nick Bradley, she wasn't the quickest away but once the penny dropped, Sam James' mount finished strongly in fifth. Beaten eight lengths by the more experienced Primrose Ridge, she will be more streetwise next time and is one to keep an eye on.


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