Tag Archive for: Sean Bowen

Mac Tottie and Bowen family rule supreme in Topham

Mac Tottie gave the Bowen family a win to treasure over the Grand National fences when coming home clear in the Randox Topham Handicap Chase.

Successful in the Grand Sefton over the famous obstacles in November, he was back to to the exact same handicap mark and arrived travelling smoothly for Sean Bowen as the leaders crossed the Melling Road.

Trainer Peter Bowen was winning the race for the fifth time, having triumphed with Dunbrody Millar (2007) and Always Waining for three successive years from 2010-2012, but it was a first success for his son.

Sent off an 8-1 chance, Mac Tottie had a host of Irish raiders for company after long-time leader Janika had cried enough jumping the last.

Ted Walsh’s Batcio and Willie Mullins’ Annamix were still in there with a chance on the run-in, but Mac Tottie ran right through the line to win by four and a quarter lengths from Batcio. Bowen also saddled the fourth, Francky Du Berlais.

“I have to say, when dad wants to get one ready he really does the job. This is the fifth time he’s won it,” said the emotional winning rider.

“James (Bowen, brother) schooled him the other day and he was beaming, he was so pleased. I’m so lucky that I got on him. It’s unbelievable. I can’t talk.

“To do it for your family is just different. Riding for your family, you can’t put into words how much different it is, doing it for your mum and dad is just different.

“I nearly got brought down at the first, but he soon got into a rhythm and really came alive after the Canal Turn. He was running away, and has gone on to win really well.”

Bowen senior said: “He loves those fences and loves that ground, so everything was just right for him.

“This has been the plan since the Grand Sefton really. He went off the boil a bit after he had that fall in the Becher, but he came back spot-on for today.

“I don’t know what it is about this place, but I love it anyway. That’s our fifth Topham and we could do with a National now!

“We loose school our horses at home and I think that helps them and makes them more accurate at their fences. This horse had a loose school session two days ago and was brilliant.”

Asked whether Mac Tottie could be a future Grand National contender, the trainer added: “If he gets the trip, that would be the question.

“We’ll have a look at what happens next year, maybe he’ll have a go at it.

“There’s no reason why he wouldn’t stay – he’s bred to. Fingers crossed.”

Walsh – who will saddle leading fancy Any Second Now in the National – said of Batcio: “He’s run great, right up to his mark and maybe above it.”

Annamix was ridden by Danny Mullins, who said: “He really took to the fences and they brought back that spark that was possibly missing in him earlier in the season.

“He enjoyed it, and I hope it might rejuvenate him as well as opening up some other options.”

Bowen breaks duck at Dundalk

Sean Bowen rode his first ever winner at Dundalk on just his fifth attempt when Ajax Tavern won the Irishinjuredjockeys.com Claiming Race in fine style.

Just like his namesake who plies his trade over jumps in the UK, Bowen hails from a famous racing family as his uncle, John Nallen, trains point-to-pointers and bred both this year’s Gold Cup and Grand National winners in Minella Indo and Minella Times.

The 16-year-old rider’s mother, Liz, manages the famous Hotel Minella in County Tipperary.

“I just got my licence at the end of September and that’s my fifth ride so far,” Bowen said after partnering Denis Hogan’s 14-1 shot to victory.

“He was lazy enough after jumping off but then started travelling and turning in he lit up. It’s a great feeling.

“I’m riding out for Denis two days a week and the rest of the week with my uncle John Nallen. I’m still in school but doing a transition year at the moment, which has given me a chance to focus on it.

“I did pony racing for a few years and had 10 winners. It was a great help riding finishes and starting – a great benefit.”

Mr Glass digs deep to secure Newcastle prize

Mr Glass secured his fourth victory in succession with a determined front-running performance in the Weatherbys nhstallions.co.uk ‘The French Furze’ Novices’ Hurdle at Newcastle.

A dual bumper winner last season and impressive on his hurdling debut at Chepstow last month, the Paul Nicholls-trained gelding was the 5-6 favourite for his latest assignment at Gosforth Park.

Sent straight to the lead by Sean Bowen, the archetypal chaser in the making was not always foot-perfect and he briefly looked in danger when challenged early in the home straight.

The well-backed Marble Sands and point-to-point winner Loughderg Rocco both loomed up looking serious threats – but to his credit, Mr Glass dug deep in the driving snow to see off the latter by a length.

Speaking from Newbury, Nicholls’ assistant Harry Derham said: “Mr Glass is a smashing horse – he’s next season’s chaser.

“I don’t think he will have a busy year. He is learning loads and as you can see, he is very green.

“I suspect he will run somewhere after Christmas in a nice, staying novice hurdle.”

Too Friendly made it two from two over obstacles with a clear-cut success in the Paul Ferguson’s Jumpers To Follow Introductory Juvenile Hurdle.

A useful performer on the Flat for George Scott, the gelded son of Camelot made a successful switch to the jumping sphere on his first start for Dan Skelton at Stratford last month.

Too Friendly (right) on his way to victory
Too Friendly (right) on his way to victory (Tim Goode/PA)

Well fancied to follow up as the 5-4 favourite, Too Friendly moved smoothly into contention under Bridget Andrews before pulling almost five lengths clear of market rival Twilight Twist on the run-in.

“He was really good,” Skelton said from Newbury.

“The runner-up made a mistake at the last which gifted it to us, but I think we may have had it covered at the time.

“It is good form and I think he’s a progressive horse.”

Scene Not Herd justified 15-8 favouritism in the Eileen Peacock Memorial Handicap Chase for trainer Charlie Longsdon and jockey Jonathan Burke.

Impressive on his return from 11 months off the track at Hereford a few weeks ago, the six-year-old made light of his welter burden of 11st 11lb – passing the post with six and a half lengths in hand over Luckofthedraw.

Longsdon said: “He was really electric at Hereford and I was slightly worried that 35 millimetres of rain (at Newcastle) might be too much for him.

“I had my reservations, but he’s a horse going the right way.

“We can step him up slightly now into better company.”

Winds Of Fire leads the way at Newcastle
Winds Of Fire leads the way at Newcastle (Tim Goode/PA)

The Evan Williams-trained Winds Of Fire came good under a cool ride from Adam Wedge in the Betfair Daily Rewards Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase.

Second on each of his final three starts of last season, the six-year-old came to grief at the first obstacle in the race won by Scene Not Herd at Hereford.

The 10-1 shot made no mistake on this occasion, however, travelling strongly before finding enough for pressure to repel Cooper’s Cross by a length and three-quarters.

Supporters of title-chasing Brian Hughes were in clover after the victory of Since Day One in the Living North EBF ‘National Hunt’ Maiden Hurdle.

Hughes was due to be in action at Bangor, but with that fixture abandoned, he instead made the journey to Newcastle for just one mount.

It proved worthwhile, however, with Donald McCain’s Since Day One striking gold at odds of 14-1.

Back On The Lash claims cross-country spoils

Back On The Lash stayed on strongly up the hill to win a thrilling race for the Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase at Cheltenham.

After 32 fences and three and three-quarter miles, it was the Martin Keighley-trained seven-year-old who got up in the final half-furlong to land the spoils in the hands of Sean Bowen.

Back On The Lash, who was backed down to 4-1 favourite, was never too far off the pace set by Potters Corner and Alpha Des Obeaux – but he was only fourth jumping the second-last fence.

Diesel D’Allier, the winner in 2019, led at that point and looked like landing the honours for a second time, only to give way in the closing stages.

Back On The Lash (black cap, right) tracks the front-runners
Back On The Lash (black cap, right) tracks the front-runners (Zac Goodwin/PA)

The race developed into a duel on the climb home between Back On The Lash and Singing Banjo, with the former prevailing by a neck.

Diesel D’Allier was a length and a half back in third followed by the Henry de Bromhead-trained pair of Plan Of Attack and Balko Des Flos.

“He’s just a novice chaser, but we took him schooling a few times around Cheltenham and he just seemed to absolutely love it,” Keighley said.

“We thought we’d give it a go and Sean’s ride was just outstanding.

“I thought it was a really good performance, the trip was a big question mark but he made it really well.

“He’s so tough, his jumping for a novice was perfect. We’re very, very pleased.

“He’ll be aimed at coming back here (Cheltenham) for the cross country at the December meeting, definitely.”

Francky Du Berlais pounces for victory in Uttoxeter feature

Francky Du Berlais snatched victory from the front-running Pistol Whipped in a pulsating finish to the feature Clarke Handicap Chase at Uttoxeter.

The Peter Bowen-trained eight-year-old was only in sixth place at the second-last fence – and was still a few lengths behind the leader at the final obstacle.

He was quickly away from it, however, and reduced the gap on Pistol Whipped to get his head in front where it mattered, winning by a nose in the hands of Bowen’s son, Sean.

Pistol Whipped looked to have the opposition cooked as he put in a superb round of jumping for Nico de Boinville and victory looked assured for Nicky Henderson’s charge until Francky De Berlais came from the clouds to collar him on the line.

Captain Tommy was four and a half lengths away in third place, with Pink Eyed Pedro fourth.

The winning trainer said: “He did it well, but he only just got there.

“He’s improving with a bit of age. He shouldn’t go up too much in the weights for that.

“I’d say he’d go for the Summer Plate at Market Rasen, I imagine.”

Metier extends unbeaten run with impressive Tolworth triumph

Metier maintained his unbeaten record over obstacles with a facile victory in the Unibet Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle at Sandown.

A useful performer on the Flat in Ireland for Andrew Slattery, the Mastercraftsman gelding subsequently changed hands for 150,000 guineas to pursue a jumping career with Harry Fry.

He made a fine start for his new connections when impressing on his hurdling bow at Newton Abbot in October – and having since doubled his tally with a dominant front-running display at Ascot, Metier was the 7-4 favourite to complete his hat-trick in this Grade One feature.

Always travelling well in the hands of Sean Bowen, the five-year-old loomed up to challenge long-time leader Shakem Up’Arry early in the home straight.

The latter did his best to make a race of it, but Metier had far too many guns and powered clear in the testing conditions to score emphatically by 12 lengths.

Paddy Power reacted by cutting the winner to 10-1 from 25-1 for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham in March.

Fry said: “He comes alive on the racecourse. It was ideal we didn’t have to make our own running today, as they went a good tempo. Sean said he just jumped for fun.

“Turning into the bottom, he had a double handful. Very rarely do races go quite so smoothly, and certainly not at this level, but I’m absolutely delighted for Gary Stevens. We bought him over a year ago now and he had to wait over 12 months to see him first run. I’m delighted that patience is being rewarded.

“He relishes those conditions. He is a very exciting hurdler. With the action on him, I wouldn’t be in too much of a hurry to run him on drying ground, but good horses have to run on all grounds.

“This is a lovely race to win and I’m absolutely delighted to get a first Grade One winner from the new yard, having only moved in back in June.

Metier clears the last at Sandown
Metier clears the last at Sandown (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

“A lot of people have helped us to get where we are. To get the new yard up and running, moved in and set up, is a lot of hard work from the team – not least for my wife Ciara, who not only is assistant trainer but is married to me, so it is a double-edged sword. It is great for all the team.

“I think you’ve got to consider that (Supreme). We will enjoy this moment then work out whether we go straight there (Cheltenham) or look at something in between.

“The Betfair (Hurdle) entries close this week, for which you have to have a third run by next weekend anyway, but he has probably gone about it the wrong way. He will certainly have an entry. It will be an interesting conversation with the handicapper.”

Monmiral extends winning run with Summit strike

Monmiral staked a claim for Cheltenham Festival honours when maintaining his unbeaten record in the bet365 Summit Juvenile Hurdle at Doncaster.

The French import was slashed to 12-1 from 25-1 for the Triumph Hurdle with Betfair and Paddy Power after adding to an Auteuil success when with Francois Nicolle and a win at Exeter for his new trainer Paul Nicholls.

Monmiral travelled like a 1-2 shot should throughout the extended two-mile journey as Gold Desert made a bold bid to lead all the way.

The race looked over when Monmiral went to the front at the third-last flight, but he gave Gold Desert another chance when fluffing the penultimate obstacle.

However, Monmiral was fluent at the last and drew away on the flat to score by 11 lengths in the hands of Sean Bowen and lift the Grade Two spoils. Glorious Zoff was 22 lengths away in third place.

Nicholls said: “He went to Exeter and won his prep for that very well. He will have one run before the spring, either here or possibly at Haydock and then he will go to either Cheltenham or Aintree.

“The idea is then look after him as he will be a chaser in the future.

“He made a bit of a mess at the second last, but he soon picked up and took off again which was good to see.

“Sir Alex (Ferguson, part owner) was up there to watch it and he nearly had two winners with Give Me A Copper, who has run well in defeat, so he has had a good day up there.”

Bowen added: “He’s a lovely horse. He travelled great. He was probably in front too soon.

“He was just travelling and winging hurdles.

“He’ll be better with a lead for longer, but I like him a lot.

“He wasn’t great at the second last, but he was just having a look round in front and he was good at the last.

“He’ll keep improving. He’s a very nice young horse.”

Bowen, who had fallen from Billingsley earlier on the card, did not take up his mount, Give Me A Copper, in the concluding bet365 Handicap Chase.

He was signed off by the racecourse medical officer and replaced by amateur rider Angus Cheleda.

Stat of the Day, 3rd September 2020

Wednesday's pick was...

5.00 Wolverhampton : Swiss Pride @ 11/2 BOG 2nd at 5/1 (Towards rear, switched right over 1f out, ran on final furlong, no threat)

Thursday's pick runs in the...

4.30 Southwell :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Normally, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.


Classic Escape @ 5/2 BOG

...in an 8-runner, Class 4,  Handicap Chase for 4yo+ over 3m1f on Good ground worth £4,289 to the winner...


Again, the racecard holds all the clues for me today...

Essentially we have a trainer and a jockey with good course records (C5) and the trainer is also one of a list of trainers I keep an eye out for in Class 4 & 5 handicap chases.

So, let's start with the jockey, Sean Bowen. A closer look at his overall record here at Southwell shows that he has won 13 of 40 (32.5% SR) races for 45.92pts (+114.8% ROI) in handicap chases here since the start of 2016 when sent off at 12/1 or shorter and this includes a 9/23 (39.1%) for 30.1pts (+130.9%) return over trips of 3m to 3m2f.

And now to the trainer, Dr Richard Newland. Of his C5 record, I'm particularly interested in his runners sent off shorter than 4/1, as they are 10 from 18 (55.6% SR) for 6.32pts (+35.1% ROI) profit, whilst more generally he's one of a number of trainers that I look for in these type of events, as his record in Class 4 handicap chases since the start of 2016 stands at 22 from 75 (29.3% SR) for 12.76pts (+17% ROI).

So, a strike rate approaching 1 in 3 and a profit of almost 20p in the pound from blind backing? What's not to like?

Well, blind backing is what's not to like, as we should always seek to eliminate some of the losers where possible without affecting our returns and in this case, we should focus on the...

  • 18 from 44 (40.9%) for 9.72pts (+22.1%) at 3/1 and shorter
  • 15 from 41 (36.6%) for 13.02pts (+31.8%) with 6 and 7 yr olds
  • and the 11 from 27 (40.7%) for 27pts (+100%) at 11-20 days since last run.

The above 22/75 also includes a 35% strike rate (7 from 20) at 3 miles and beyond, whilst 6/7 yr olds at 3/1 and shorter at 11-30 dslr are 10/16 (62.5% SR) for 14.47pts (+90.5% ROI) and an A/E of 1.66 including 7 from 10 (70% and A/E of 1.68) from 7 yr olds...

...giving us... a 1pt win bet on Classic Escape @ 5/2 BOG as was available at 8.05am Thursday, but as always please check your own BOG status (*some firms are not BOG until later in the morning)To see a small sample of odds offered on this race...

...click here for the betting on the 4.30 Southwell

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!


Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!