Raceday Report - 14th January 2019


15 January 2019

With rain lacking in much of the country, most of today’s races at Ffos Las contained a good-sized fields that had come in search of soft going.

Tim Vaughan sponsored the first on the card, a 2m6f hurdle, and in hindsight we wondered why his runner Briac was allowed to start at 16/1. Ridden patiently by Alan Johns, he came through to lead on the long run to the second last, jumped it well and had the race in safe keeping from there. Cottonvale, a final-flight faller at Hereford recently, finished nine lengths away.

Colonel Custard (7/4) led from halfway in the 2m novice hurdle and although the odds on favourite Nordic Combined was driven almost alongside before the second last, a good jump by the leader increased his advantage. He had over two lengths to spare at the line from the runner-up, who was finishing in that position for the third time in a row. Tom O’Brien rode the winner for Somerset trainer Nicky Martin, who is having her best ever season.

The 2m novice chase had only three runners, and Nicky Henderson’s Whatswrongwithyou was plenty short enough at 2/5 favourite. Nico de Boinville was content to follow The Last Day and make his move late, but a slight error at the penultimate fence cost him a length or two. Forced to ask for more effort than expected, he ran on well for pressure to lead in the last 50 yards and score by three quarters of a length. He should do better in a bigger field or a more strongly-run race.

Successful at Bangor a week ago, Dai Rees’s Gone Platinum was understandably favourite for the 2m4f hurdle that he sponsored. He travelled well round the inside, and took a share of the lead before two out. However, one of those alongside was the Evan Williams-trained Golden Whisky (7/1), who proved stronger going to the last, and despite wandering on the run-in Adam Wedge straightened him up and he won by a length and a quarter.

During the 2m3f mares chase backers of Goodgirlteresa (4/1) had little to worry about. Always going sweetly under Micheal Nolan, she couldn’t help but take the lead four fences out and from there she steadily extended her superiority to 14 lengths. The handicapper will hammer Kayley Woollacott’s improving ex-point-to-pointer for this, so they might run her again later this week. Quantum Of Solace was the remote second.

Finally, the bumper went to Nigel and Sam Twiston-Davies’s Jelski (6/4 fav), who had run fifth at Ascot in what looked like a better race. From three out he, The Cob and Just Got To Get On pulled clear of the rest three furlongs out and they had a great set-to before Jelski asserted in the last hundred yards. He was better than the official margin of three quarters of a length implies, for he was looking around inquisitively in the closing stages rather than concentrating on the job, but he should know more next time out.

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