Mark Howard Publications Ltd

Boxing Day Review

26-December-2021 16:06
in General
by Admin

Twenty one years after Florida Pearl's victory in the King George at Kempton, Willie Mullins won the Christmas showpiece for a second time with Tornado Flyer causing an upset. The 28/1 outsider, who was a Grade 1 winner as a bumper horse, was tackling the trip for only the second time (well beaten in the Savills Chase this time last year). Given a patient ride by Danny Mullins, that proved the key with the eight year old coming off a suidical early pace. A nine lengths winner, he appeared to be holding stablemate Asterion Forlonge when that rival hit the deck for the fourth time during his chasing career. 

Fair play to the winner who is an admirable horse who has been competing at the highest level throughout his career but one can't help feeling that Paul Nicholls will have travelled home on Sunday evening a frustrated figure. There is reason to believe that none of his jockey's excelled - last year's winner Frodon went too hard in front and became embroiled in a duel from the outset with Minella Indo, Clan Des Obeaux got involved too soon down the backstraight on the final circuit, while Saint Calvados was produced far too earlier. The last named appeared a non stayer twelve months ago and yet his jockey rode him into contention soon after the fourth last. 

Minella Indo, who wore cheekpieces for the first time, wasn't given a very intelligent ride either as he tried to go head to head with the aforementioned Frodon, while Chantry House was cruelly exposed following a series of mistakes before being pulled up some way from home. 

Earlier on the card, Bravemansgame made it three wins from as many starts over fences with an imperious display in the Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices' Chase. Third over hurdles at Cheltenham last spring, he has improved since sent chasing and had too much speed for old rival Ahoy Senor. Paul Nicholls is already eyeing next year's King George for the winner. I wouldn't write off the runner-up yet even though he was put firmly in his place. Derek  Fox's mount failed to get into a rhythm and was guessy at a number of his fences. A return to a left handed galloping track will see him in a much better light. The winner is a class act though with speed and stamina.

The Top 40 Prospects had three runners on Boxing Day and they produced a winner, runner-up and faller. French import Henn See produced a gutsy display to win a two miles maiden hurdle at Limerick having been briefly headed. A staying type, the four year old will improve as the season progresses and over much further. Black Poppy ran well in the opening novice hurdle at Kempton but was no match for the easy winner Broomfield Burg. One can only assume the owners want a day out at the Sunbury track because he is offically rated 112 compared to Nicky Henderson's victor who lined up off a mark of 134. The five year old would have taken a fair bit of beating in a 0-115 or 0-120 handicap. His connections now face an anxious wait to see how much the assessor raises him. From a personal point of view, the trend was set for the day when another French recruit State Man ended up on the floor at the second last in the two miles maiden hurdle at Leopardstown. Heavily supported beforehand, Willie Mullins' four year old was travelling strongly at the time. 

Talking of Broomfield Burg, it is possible Nicky Henderson will be thinking in terms of the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury (12th February). A keen going sort, he will be suited by a strong early gallop and novices have won 9 of the last 12 renewals of the two miles event.


  • “Thank you for a very successful and profitable email service. My personal highlight was the win of Aloomomo whose romp round Uttoxeter was a joy. Keep up the good work with all your services, the books and updates, they are simply the best by a very long way.”


  • “Just want to say thanks for running the service again this year, I have ended up with a nice £756 profit from it so I'm obviously very happy with that so thanks a lot!”


  • “Thanks for your email Mark would just like to say your selections and insight has been awesome. Keep up the good work sir your service is the best.”


  • “Thank you for an excellent tipping service throughout the three months. It has been a pleasure and profitable to be a member of your service. Your indepth knowledge and analysis of the race has been excellent. I honestly rate your service as one of the best and most profitable.”


  • “Thanks very much for the fantastic service you have supplied, I have been involved with racing tipsters for over 30 years and never had as good a strike rate as yourself, out of this world.”


  • “The email service as usual has been brilliant and this season's OJA seems to continue to unearth amazing insight if you have the time to trust and follow it in detail over a period. Thanks as always for your outstanding value for money publications.”


  • “Superb information again Mark, I managed to get some 11/4, will certainly pay for Xmas. Different class.”


  • “Awesome result the magicman strikes again. Won with plenty in hand and not a moments worry great write up spot on again and results speak for themselves best service I've tried, keep up the fantastic work sir. Very happy customer!”


Contact Us

Mark Howard Publications Ltd.
69 Fairgarth Drive
Kirkby Lonsdale

015242 71826

015242 79010