Sunday, 17 March 2019

Leighton Aspell Steers French Horse Pineau de Re to Claim the 2014 Aintree Grand National

Grand National 2014
The false start curse struck again in this year’s Crabbie Grand National, as the race got underway at the second time of asking with the sheepskin noseband of Battle Group up in the air with the horse refusing to start.

Hazy sunshine broke through the muggy sky as the race lost 3 runners in the first three fences and Sam Waley-Cohen hit the front on Long Run, just a fraction ahead of the closely packed field. Last Time D'Albain was the next to go at Becher’s and pre race joint favourites Teaforthree and Double Seven sat in 6th and 7th respectively.

After several fallers at Valentine’s, a fence that saw the end of Long Run, Mountainous and the Aidan Coleman owned Rainbow Hunter, Across the Bay took it up just ahead of Mr Moonshine with last year’s National winning jockey Ryan Mania in the saddle.

Halfway

Across the Bay ridden by Henry Brooke still lead jumping over the Chair, narrowly avoiding disaster thanks to an errant riderless horse. The Bay recovered to maintain his advantage over Colbert Station who was now in 2nd place, but the 15th saw the end of Teaforthree’s and Nick Schofield’s National for another year.

Disaster

Two stray horses were to prove to be Across the Bay’s downfall, as they carried the unfortunate Henry Brooke and his ride well wide, allowing the entire field to pass by. He did rejoin the race, but was never again in contention.

Noel Fehily seized the opportunity this stroke of bad fortune had provided, as he steered Rocky Creek to the front of the pack. Colbert Station remained in second place as the race passed in front of the cheering crowd and the rain began to fall and A P McCoy was well placed on Double Seven, hoping to make a successful return to the race after a few years of disappointment.

Second Jumping of Becher’s

As the field stretched going over Becher’s Brook in worsening weather conditions, Rocky Creek was still holding his position at the head of the race. Pineau de Re was making his first tentative moves towards the front at this point with the horse going well in around 6th place.

Heading For Home

As they turned for home, there were 2 clear leaders, with Rocky Creek vying for first with Pineau de Rey who was really picking up the pace. This was a decisive moment as Leighton Aspell rode strongly over the last, pulling 3 lengths clear and having cleared the elbow, it was evident that Pineau de Rey had the legs to stay the course and he did so by 5 lengths followed by Balthazar King and A P McCoy a close third on Double Seven.

It was a win for Aspell on his 7th Grand National appearance and one that earned his jubilant owners Barry Connell and John Provan a cool £561,300 in prize money.

After the race, the World Horse Welfare stated that they were happy with the modifications that had been made and the effect they had had on equine welfare at this year’s race. Another reason to feel good about racing on this most momentous of days.

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Cheltenham Festival Ryanair Chase Preview

 

The Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival faced a little criticism when it first came on board, as suggestions were made that it would take something away from the Gold Cup. However, as the race has grown it has developed into a top quality addition to the festival, and a big prize to win in its own right. People now respect this race, and in 2019 we look set to have another fantastic renewal.

The ante-post betting market for the race right now looks a lot different than the one we will see on the day, as horses are declared for other races, either over shorter or longer distances. The current race favourite is Min at a best-price of 5/1 as found by Oddschecker, though he is one of many horses who may look elsewhere, and the two-mile Queen Mother Champion Chase is the one that he may contest instead of this one.

One horse who will be going to the Ryanair is Waiting Patiently, and he will go down to the festival as one of the main hopes from the North of England. He is trained by Ruth Jefferson, who took over from her father Malcolm last year when he sadly passed away. The horse has a very apt name considering his career so far, and despite being an eight year old he has just ten runs under his belt. He has won seven of those though, and looks ready to move into top quality company which this race will give him. His best win so far came in the Ascot Chase last year, when he got the better of Cue Card in what was a very impressive win.

The original plan for the horse was to possibly go to the Gold Cup, but the yard wanted to test out his stamina with a run in the King George. He was fancied that day, but was brought down by another horse early on in the race so the yard learnt nothing. They do not want to risk his stamina, which is why the Ryanair is his intended target.

Just like Min, many of the other fancied runners in this race come from Ireland. Willie Mullins trains Min and if that horse goes for the race, he is unlikely to go on his own, with Un De Sceaux and Footpad other potential runners for the yard from Closutton. Un De Sceaux has run in this race before, winning it in 2017 before finishing second behind Balko Des Flos in 2018.

 


Elsewhere the Irish could have further representation in the race from Monalee and Road To Respect. While Monalee is still a possibility for the Gold Cup, it seems as though Road To Respect will head to this race instead. He is owned by Michael O’Leary which helps as he owns Ryanair the sponsors, but he also looked as though the Gold Cup trip would be a stretch for him, when he was beaten by Bellshill in the Irish equivalent.

Away from Ireland, two English trained runners that are set to be in the field are Politologue trained by Paul Nicholls and Fox Norton trained by Colin Tizzard. Fox Norton has run over many different distances during his career, but it appears as though two and a half miles is the trip for him. He is a top class horse but lacks the speed and change of gears for two miles, while lacking the stamina to run over three.

Politologue has been seen over two miles for a large part of his career, but the signs are that he stays this kind of trip, and could be considered a dark horse for the race.
 

The Irish look as though they are going to be strongly represented, although it is unlikely that all of the above mentioned Irish horses will run. Those trained in England should all run in the race, and of those, it is Waiting Patiently that stands out above the crowd. He deserves a change of luck in his career after struggling to get to the track as often as he should have done, and he looks to be the leading prospect for the north at the festival this year.



Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Ryan Mania on Aurora’s Encore Storms Home to Win the 2013 Grand National

Grand National 2013
The 166th running of the John Smith’s Grand National was blessed with glorious April sunshine, as the waiting field cast long shadows across the track, eagerly awaiting starters orders. They went off cleanly with no hitches and Balthazar King hit the front first, leading the still complete field successfully over the first 4 fences.

Amazingly, there were still no fallers or refusal having cleared Becher’s for the first time, although the forty runners and riders had spread out somewhat after their efforts at the last fence. The commentator grew increasingly surprised as fence after fence was cleared by the entire complement of National runners.

Finally

It had to end at some point and it did as Canal Turn proved too much for The Rainbow Hunter, Treacle and Big Fella Thanks who all unseated their riders.

At the Halfway point, there were still 35 runners involved and it was Irish horse Across The Bay, ridden by Henry Brook who led the bunched riders round the turn. Richard Johnson steered Balthazar King from The Bushmakers stable just a half a length back, with Soll alongside him.

It was to be another miserable Grand National for A P McCoy, as he was thrown from the saddle falling with Colbert Station at the chair. Over the next few plain fences, the order stayed the same at the front and Across the bay pulled 3 to 4 lengths clear.

Henry Brook and his horse Across The Bay held this lead until Canal Turn when Tea For Two drifted past him. There was no distinct shape to the race going over the last open ditch, with each horse seeming to find staying upright a difficult enough job on its own, but the first three remained in place before being joined by Aurora’s Encore in 4th.

Striking For Home

Two from home and it was anybody’s race, with Sam Waley-Cohen on Oscar Time in with a shout and Aurora’s Encore staying in touch. The 11 year old pulled clear going into the elbow, Ryan Mania squeezing every inch of speed out of the horse and pulling away on the outside, it was a powerful run in that ultimately won the National for the Irish bred, British trained racehorse.

Ryan Mania’s win on the unfancied Sue Smith trained outsider was a big shock and marked only the third time a female trainer had trained the National winner.

On his win in his first ever National, Ryan Mania enthused "There are no words to describe it. I got a dream ride round. I couldn't believe my luck." and you could see on his face that it meant the world to him.

Thursday, 24 January 2019

Kentucky Derby Race: How It Began?

Image Source: pixabay.com


American entrepreneur Col. Meriwether Lewis Clark, Jr visited England and France, which he attended the Derby at Epsom Downs. After enjoying the race it inspires him to create a great horse racing of his own.

He returns to Kentucky and initiated a club to raise funds to build a track, also known as Churchill Downs at these days. The track distance was inspired by the Derby at Epsom of 1½ miles but later changed to 1¼ miles in the year 1896. Churchill Downs is one of the iconic sports arenas in the world and in the record it can host up to 170,000 people as it did in Kentucky Derby Day.

The first race was on May 17, 1875, and was witnessed by 10,000 people in attendance. The race was won by a three-year-old chestnut colt, Aristides who also finished second on the Belmont Stakes.

Horse racing kind of business did not bloom right away but not until 1903 under the leadership of renowned Matt Win, Kentucky Derby began to profit and it became popular.

But in the 1990s there was movement from neighboring states to abolish horse racing but Kentucky surpasses the threat and continues to be popular as they were on news to have the very first filly to win the derby in the year 1915 and continue to gain its exposure on their popularity. Their winners are now given gifts such as gold buffet service, candlestick, magnificent cup and a great trophy each year from 1922-1924 as a sign of their victory. The Kentucky Derby Race became even more popular as they began to be broadcasted in radio in 1995.

The Kentucky Derby’s racing history and annual tradition was interrupted by a great depression in the 1930s. The year 1938 a tunnel was built that led from grandstand to the infield and opened to the public with an admission price of 50 cents. The opening of the tunnel makes things better to Kentucky Derby.

Another stepping stone for Kentucky Derby’s popularity is when it was first televised locally in 1949 where they celebrated their 75th annual tradition.

When Matt Winn passed away, Bill Corum took over that brought the Derby to big improvements such as the CBS broadcasts the Derby nationwide, concrete firewalls were constructed to the barns, additional seats were added to the Derby, filming of the race was also done for replays, and they added sprinklers system in the grandstand and clubhouse. More improvements were done during the 1960s.

In 1973 the legendary Secretariat with Jockey Ron Turcotte Astride breaks a record of 1:59 2/5 time at the Kentucky Derby. In 25 years it is the first Triple Crown win which brought the public’s focus on horse racing. In 1974 another record-breaking event was made during the 100th Kentucky Derby, 163,628 people joined to watch the race.

Over $25 million was invested to the Derby for improvements and marketing campaign throughout the 1980s and 1990s. They also launched their own website www.kentuckyderby.com during that year.

From the year 2000 until today Kentucky Derby continuously evolving, from their grounds, security, they increased their TV coverage that adds the number of people annually attends the race.

Throughout the years there are some traditions in Kentucky Derby remains in their annual celebration such as the stunning ladies hats and the official drink of the Kentucky Derby which is the Mint Julep.

Mint Julep is an iced drink with bourbon, mint, and sweet syrup served in a commemorative Kentucky Derby Glass that comes in different design throughout the years.

Raleigh DeGeer Amyx who lives in Louisville, Kentucky. He is a world-renowned collector of historical memorabilia, one of his collection is the extensive collection of Official Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Glasses.

The purse of the Kentucky Derby is about $2million on these days, the first place will take home for about $1,425,000. Things just run fast at this sport just like the horses on the actual race, the very first winner of the Kentucky Derby in 1875 just took home $2,850 while the second placed horse earning just $200.

In betting on the Kentucky Derby you need to be updated about the race. You should already know who are the front runners. You also need to know the history of the race which can be accessed through their website, https://www.tvg.com/promos/kentucky-derby/kentucky-derby-history.html.

All of that can help you bet for the winner of this race. Because if you bet to Kentucky Derby Race without knowing anything about the race it will only give you less chance in choosing the right winner.

In Kentucky Derby year by year it offers new for their audience as part of their marketing campaign and for now, betting is much more exciting. You can now bet in your favorite horse on the web. It gives you convenience in your time, energy, and hassle-free. Kentucky Derby Race gives you the power to bet in your own hands.

Friday, 11 January 2019

Cheltenham Festival - Supreme Novices' Hurdle

The Supreme Novices’ Hurdle gets the honour of opening the action at the Cheltenham Festival every year. This really is an honour that comes with a lot of pressure as the race is expected to set the tone for the four-day event. It is a National Hunt Grade one rated race that brings together horses of four years or more competing over a distance of two miles and half a furlong (3298 meters) at the Old Cheltenham Course.

A run of well over half a century gives the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle a rich history which makes it just the ideal event to open this popular festival in Britain.

Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh have had great runs in this opening race, each earning five wins in the trainer and jockey category respectively. They worked as a team between 2013 and 2015, sweeping first honours in all three years.

Mullins-trained Getabird is still favourite to win the 2018 event after winning both hurdle races he has started in with a considerable gap between him and the second placed finisher in the past season. First Flow, peerless in his last three jump races, is a close competitor.