Tag Archive for: Corach Rambler

Russell buoyed by Corach Rambler and Ahoy Senor efforts

Lucinda Russell is mulling over options for stable stars Ahoy Senor and Corach Rambler after their Cheltenham exploits, although she admitted both could be saved for next season.

Ahoy Senor chased home L’Homme Presse in the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase, while Corach Rambler tasted success with a storming late run under Derek Fox in the Ultima Handicap Chase.

The Alary handler, along with partner and assistant Peter Scudamore, are already looking ahead to next season with plenty of optimism.

Russell said: “Both are fantastic. They have both come home sound and happy. It is just a delight to cap off a super week. We are just really pleased with both of them.

“I don’t know if either will run this season. We are not sure.

“Corach might have an entry in the bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown, and we will look at Ahoy Senor to see how well he is and whether or not he goes to Aintree, or even Punchestown, but I don’t know. At this stage, we will probably save him for next season.”

Corach Rambler gave Russell her second festival winner 10 years after breaking her duck with Brindisi Breeze. He has now won three of his six starts over fences having bounced back in style after unseating Fox at Ascot on his penultimate run.

Eight-time champion jockey Scudamore, who rode 13 winners at Cheltenham, including two Champion Hurdles, does most of the work at home aboard the quirky eight-year-old, who invariably saves something for himself.

Russell added: “Corach is a horse, because of his style of running, who never wins by very far and I thought Derek gave him a great ride. He is a horse with plenty of ability.

“He is just a very exciting horse. He has been slightly in the shadow of Ahoy Senor, but actually it is nice for him that he has been quite happily working his way up the ranks while everyone is watching the other one.”

Russell feels that their star chasers have somewhat put the Scottish stable back on the map and have provided vindication of the hard work the yard puts in, spotting, securing and producing equine talent.

Star novice Ahoy Senor could be saved for next season
Star novice Ahoy Senor could be saved for next season (David Davies/PA)

“It has been brilliant,” she added. “It is always exciting when you target races with horses and to take two down there and to have a first and second at that level is fantastic. It just eggs us on to want us to do it again.

“We chose the horses ourselves, produced them ourselves and it is good to have that reassurance that what you are doing is correct and it gives you that confidence.

“We came back from a week down there and look around at the other horses we have got and I just can’t wait for next year!

“We will be buying again this spring and summer, but we have got nice ones for next season again too, hopefully.”

Corach Rambler swoops late for Ultima glory, Brazil floors Gaelic Warrior plunge

Corach Rambler came from the rear of the field to score an unlikely victory in the Ultima Handicap Chase at Cheltenham.

Derek Fox produced the Lucinda Russell-trained eight-year-old with a incredible late run to land the spoils in cosy fashion, going away.

Fox was patient on the 10-1 shot after being slowly way due to the standing start. Corach Rambler only had one horse, Belargus, behind him in the early stages of the three-mile-one-furlong stamina test.

He still had more horses in front than behind him at the top of the hill, but he made relentless progress on the downhill section of the course to challenge the two leaders, Gericault Roque and Oscar Elite, at the final fence.

Derek Fox (centre left) and connections of Corach Rambler celebrate at Cheltenham
Derek Fox (centre left) and connections of Corach Rambler celebrate at Cheltenham (Nigel French/PA)

That pair looked to have the race between them but Fox had other ideas and Corach Rambler came between them in the closing stages to win by two and a quarter lengths from Gericault Roque. Oscar Elite was a head away in third with Tea Clipper eight lengths back in fourth.

Russell said: “It means so much. Driving here I said to Scu (partner Peter Scudamore) ‘if we had loads of horses running at the Festival, it wouldn’t matter so much’, but we’re so invested in the two that are here.

“Scu does everything with this horse and it’s not just having a winner at Cheltenham, which means a lot, but it’s about the horse and the owners, a lot of whom haven’t had a horse before. It’s amazing.

“He worked quite well with Ahoy Senor the other day. Most horses couldn’t lay a finger on him, but this horse got quite close to him.

“I didn’t want him to go to Ascot last time, Scu did. He said afterwards he would have been first or second and would have gone up 5lb, so maybe it was a good thing that he unseated.

“He could be an Aintree horse next year, definitely.

“Because of the false starts we were at the back and I was stood with the owners and said to one of them ‘we’ll need a vintage Derek Fox ride’ and we got one.

“It’s funny, it suits the horse as he loves coming through horses. He’s a bit quirky but that was lovely, we knew he’d come up the hill as he’d won here before.

“I’ve said before, Scu rides him all the time and they suit each other as they are both quirky. I want them to do two canters and he’ll head off and canter on the grass. It’s great, well done Derek.”

Brazil edged out hot favourite Gaelic Warrior to give trainer Padraig Roche a first Festival winner in the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle.

French import Gaelic Warrior looked like justifying his short price of 13-8 favourite on his debut for Willie Mullins, but he was collared close home by the former Aidan O’Brien-trained Brazil.

Both horses were up with the pace from the outset with Gaelic Warrior making virtually all until Brazil (10-1) got the upper hand close home in the hands of Mark Walsh.

Brazil and Mark Walsh
Brazil and Mark Walsh (Nigel French/PA)

“It’s fantastic, we’re lucky to have a horse like him. It’s great,” said Roche, who took over the licence from his father, Christy.

“He’s a full-brother to Capri so we knew he’d definitely stay, Mark was brilliant on him so I’m just delighted. JP and Noreen (McManus) have been very good to me.

“It’s unbelievable, I’ve been coming here since I was young, when dad was training. It’s just unbelievable that it’s worked out.

“We just thought he was improving, it’s taken him a while with his jumping but he was improving.”

Of Gaelic Warrior, who was a huge ante-post plunge, Joe Chambers, racing manager to owner Rich Ricci said: “He jumped a bit right and put down at the third-last. Then he went right at the last. He’s going to jump fences fairly shortly.

“Look it was worth a punt and it gave everyone a kick. There’s plenty of time, he’s not even eight years old.”

Lucinda Russell pondering Classic Chase outing for Corach Rambler

Lucinda Russell will weigh up her options for the exciting Corach Rambler, who holds entries in both the Agetur UK Ltd Classic Chase and the Wigley Group Hampton Novices’ Chase at Warwick on Saturday.

Russell, who has also entered stable stalwart Big River in the £100,000 Classic Chase, is quietly tempted by the prospect of running Corach Rambler in the feature race, despite the eight-year-old only having had three races over fences.

The handicapper has raised him 15lb for wins at Aintree and Cheltenham and Russell is keen to see how he would fare in open company, especially as he would be at a disadvantage at the weights if clashing with Paul Nicholls’ Threeunderthrufive in the Grade Two novice chase.

“We’ll have a look at the weights and everything and see what we do with Big River because he’s in at Kelso on Sunday as well,” said Russell.

“If the ground isn’t too bad, Corach might go in the handicap.

“He’s definitely an improving horse. He goes under the radar a little bit because of Ahoy Senor but he done nothing wrong and is clearly improving.

“In my view he stays, I know Scu (Peter Scudamore, partner and assistant trainer) is 100 per cent sure that he will, but I think he will and maybe off 142 there’s a little bit of wriggle room.

“If he ran in the Grade Two novice he’d have to improve at least 6lb to beat Threeunderthrufive, so I think he might be better off in the big handicap going for a big pot.

“He’s eight, he’s still improving and when you watch Cheltenham again, he’s got a bit more still to come. It’s exciting to have another big weekend coming up.”

Russell won the Classic with subsequent Grand National winner One For Arthur in 2017 and would not rule out Big River if the going was testing.

“He seems extremely well, he’s jumping better than he ever has, he’s just turned 12 and he’s finally got the hang of it,” she went on.

“He’s blossoming so he could go to Warwick or Kelso, which is a track he loves but that’s only three miles. I suppose he’ll go where the ground is softest.”

Others in the Classic Chase mix include the Venetia Williams-trained pair of Achille and Commodore, Dr Richard Newland’s Minella Encore and Henry Daly’s Head To The Stars.

Threeunderthrufive would be the one to beat if running in the Hampton Novices' Chase
Threeunderthrufive would be the one to beat if running in the Hampton Novices’ Chase (Tim Goode/PA)

There are seven possibles in the Hampton Novices’ Chase, which it was announced on Monday carries a £25,000 bonus to any horse who wins it and follows up at Cheltenham in March.

Any News, Doyen Breed, Midnight River, Mint Condition and Mossey Fen could take on Threeunderthrufive and Corach Rambler.

The Ballymore Leamington Novices’ Hurdle has attracted 14 entries as the other Grade Two on the card.

Gelino Bello, Howdyalikemenow, Gordon Elliott’s Mr Fred Rogers, Stag Horn and Surrey Quest are among them.