Oakley Brown and Conor McGovern – watch carefully
August 22nd, 2018 | Ian Carnaby's Racing News
Watching a couple of Henry Candy’s fillies run moderately this week I acknowledged that this has not been a great season for one of my favourite trainers. Also, with rain setting in at long last, stable star Limato is unlikely to get his ground in the time that remains. It’s a pity, because the last twice he’s looked nearly as good as before.
Trying to take something from Carnaby seller day at Brighton, I hope there may be a tiny race for Harlequin Rose at one of the final two meetings,. You may have noted that the winner of my race, Arcanista, returned on the following two Mondays and picked up two non-selling handicaps. What is the world coming to? Actually, it’s not unheard of. Luke Dace won a non-seller at Lingfield with Scenic Lady a while back, Bookmaker was pretty effective at Wolverhampton and Wahaab, who scrambled home from Time Medicean two years ago, pops up now and again for Sophie Leech.
Anyway, Harlequin Rose finished second to Arcanista and, on one of the days she went hack and won, Pat Chamings’ filly finished second in a non-seller at 12/1. Time is running out but Pat ought to be able to find something for her.
In a blog like this (and in the Weekend Card, and on the line if it comes to that), one is bound to mention a few thing that work, but only if people write them down. Laborious, I know. Well, Medieval did his level best to poke me in the eye when finishing second at Newbury yesterday because he was stepping up to ten furlongs, a trip he had tried only once before, finishing last. It’s effectively scuppered things because I was hoping for a mile handicap at one of the two remaining Goodwood meetings. That may still happen, of course, but the price will be a good deal shorter than anticipated.
Watching Paul Cole’s moves with Medieval and Upstaging has been interesting, to say the least. They were both going to Ripon on Great St Wilfrid day but Paul changed his mind and neither made the journey. I’m writing this before Upstaging has a go in the Ayr Gold Cup, having scraped into the big one as opposed to the Silver version. I don’t feel as strongly about him as I did but I still think the King Power people were thinking of a major handicap tilt when they purchased him back in the spring. The draw looks poor if we rely on Bronze Cup form but the jockey booking is interesting, Conor McGovern is Ireland-based and good value for the 3lb claim. He is over ostensibly to ride Al Qawah for David O’Meara in the Silver Cup – he’s ridden him the last twice – but Paul was well aware of developments and snapped him up. I think stakes have to be minimal in both races but Al Qawah, Upstaging and Muntadab would be my best guesses.
The other thing I circulated for general information concerns David Ashforth’s careful monitoring of former pony racing champion Oakley Brown, who is with Richard Fahey and can claim 7lb. He won the Bronze Cup on Lucky Lucky Man for the yard and is wonderful value for the full allowance so you should note riding arrangements from now on. It won’t be long before the wider world sits up and takes notice, of course, especially after yesterday.
There can’t be room for everyone, needless to say, and Adam McNamara doesn’t seem to be riding for Fahey so often, or at all, these days. Every cloud, etc, because he is sometimes put up by Roger Charlton, who is no mean judge and was one of the first to go for David Egan a couple of years ago. I see now that Adam couldn’t win on Kassar in the last race at Glorious Goodwood because the horse is a rascal, but it’s good news for him that Charlton wants him. The other development at Beckhampton concerns Trevor Whelan, who won on Blakeney Point at Chester – just about my nap of the season so far – and is giving up the jumps to concentrate on the Flat. He rode an intelligent race on Blakeney Point, who is not necessarily 100 per cent straightforward and tends to drift left under pressure. Having said that, he won decisively.
I have nothing new to report regarding my friend Ray Greatorex’s Swiss Pride, who ran so poorly at Sandown, but I hope Richard Hughes can get him back to his best. It remains tricky yard to follow, though, and Richard needs a ‘headline’ Saturday winner at some point. I can’t find Mark Johnston’s winners, either, and heaven knows there are enough of them. I doubt we’ll ever know when an older handicapper is about to cry enough for the time being or when he/she is about to come good again but I’d bet quite heavily that Cape Volta is quite a bit better than we saw at Doncaster last week.