By Richard Hoiles
There was a real feel good factor to events over the past few days, starting with Saturday’s success for Waiting Patiently over the rejuvenated and now Gold Cup-bound Cue Card in the Betfair Ascot Chase.
Malcolm Jefferson fought his illness with the same dignity he always showed on the racecourse and it was a poignant victory for daughter Ruth Jefferson so soon after his passing. The fact the load has had to be spread over the last couple of years has allowed the building of a good support network and an early high profile success for her will hopefully herald continued success for one of the North’s most respected operations.
Malcolm would certainly be proud of her downplaying of Cheltenham expectations and her assertion that there is more to the season than just the Festival.
Also in the spotlight last night were the nominees for the Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards. Sadly not enough light is shone on the staff, who commit so much time and dedication to ensuring stables and studs run so smoothly.
It is a very uplifting evening full of stories of names who may never be household ones yet contribute massively to the sport, often as a labour of love rather than any expectation of great financial return or personal recognition. Well done to not just the winners but all those nominated.
Its nice to have some jumping back this week and hopefully I’ll be calling home a couple of horses at Taunton.
A Listed bumper winner on the Flat, Oscar Rose has yet to get off the mark from five hurdling starts but this looks the best opportunity she has had since shoddy jumping cost her on her hurdling debut in May.
The form of her Doncaster handicap fourth has been franked by Woolstone One’s win in a Listed Race at Warwick. Giving weight to her that day Oscar Rose has more than enough form on the board to win this novice hurdle.
The increase in trip coupled with ground softer that ideal found Caid Du Lin out at Ascot last time and he will find this significantly easier than the handicap he ran in at the same time just before Christmas.
He goes well for Charlie Hammond and with likely drying conditions at Taunton and a return to the minimum trip he could bounce back to form.
The gelded son of Pour Moi looks an interesting purchase from Ireland, where he placed twice over shorter trips on the All-Weather surface at Dundalk.
He starts life in this country off a basement mark and given he is by th 2011 Derby winner he could well find further improvement for the step up in trip alone.
The booking of Irish amateur Lisa O’Neill, more regularly associated with Ollie Murphy’s old boss, Gordon Elliott, also lends encouragement. He should take plenty of beating.
The All-Weather exploits of Dean Ivory have been referred to several times in this column and Dor’s Law’s hold-up style should be suited to what looks a race likely to be run at a decent pace.
With Ramblow likely to be sent forward from the wide gate Dor’s Law can be dropped in from stall 10. Providing a path can be found through the likely traffic she should be finishing to good effect under Rob Hornby.
Richard Hoiles's Tuesday tips:
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