Tag Archive for: Premier Hurdle

Premier prize in Colonel Harry’s sights

Colonel Harry will bid to give the Tolworth Hurdle form a boost when he lines up in the Grade Two bet365 Premier Novices’ Hurdle at Kelso on Saturday.

Jamie Snowden’s six-year-old won a heavy-ground Sandown maiden hurdle in November before finishing fourth in the Grade One Tolworth over the same course and distance.

Though he jumped left on occasions, finishing six and a quarter lengths behind Tahmuras, he backed up that promising run with an eight-length success in a Newcastle novice.

Back up in class, he again takes on Nemean Lion, who was two and three-quarter lengths ahead of him in third at Sandown.

Snowden said: “It is a competitive race, but obviously our lad has won two novice hurdles and he ran very well at Sandown, when he jumped slightly out to his left, in the Tolworth.

“That probably looks the best form coming into this and Nemean Lion was only just in front of us that day, so hopefully a reproduction of that form on a left-handed track might see him to better effect.

“He is a nice horse, but I hope the ground is what they say it is. He definitely wants softer ground – he wouldn’t want good ground.”

Accidental Rebel goes in search of a fifth win in six and will carry top weight, shouldering a penalty for landing Chepstow’s Grade Two Persian War Novices’ Hurdle when equipped with first-time cheekpieces on his previous start.

The headgear remains and trainer Fergal O’Brien is hopeful he will be fresh for his first run in 148 days.

He said: “He has done very well and we gave him a break after he won the Persian War.

“We had him back in for the Challow, but the ground went bottomless, so we have been waiting ever since to get a bit of decent ground.

“Hopefully he will run well. I see the ground has gone soft up there, but hopefully it won’t get too soft for him.”

Dan Skelton is looking to the future with Hoe Joly Smoke, who has finished placed on both starts over hurdles at Chepstow, latterly when third to the unbeaten Doyen Star.

“He ran a nice race at Chepstow,” said Skelton. “He’s in at the deep end, but if he finished nicely in this, he’s had three good runs over hurdles without losing his novice status and he’d be a maiden for next year.

“Then he’ll be one of the higher-rated, more experienced ones of that pack.”

Lookaway has schooled well under Jack Quinlan
Lookaway has schooled well under Jack Quinlan (David Davies/PA)

Lookaway was unbeaten in two bumpers for Neil King, including a Grade Two contest at Aintree in April last year.

He has had two subsequent starts over hurdles and has yet to deliver on last season’s promise, but King retains plenty of confidence in his charge as he returns from a three-month break.

He said: “I’m looking forward to see him running – it has been a long time.

“On his bumper form he’s over-priced, but on what he has achieved over hurdles on his first two starts, he isn’t.

“But we had a rotten middle part of the season. My horses were badly out of form, so we have just given them all the time needed to come right. They now seem back in good order.

“Two-miles-two on what sounds like beautiful jumping ground around Kelso should be ideal for him. We’re looking forward to seeing him getting back to his best.

“Jack (Quinlan) came and schooled him the other day and he jumped electrically, so we are very much looking forward to it.”

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