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OCTOBER 2018 HORSES TO FOLLOW
BURST YA BUBBLE     (Seamus Mullins)

6 year old bay gelding     (Spadoun – Accordian Lady)     7/64457/312951-36

Although the numbers that show results in his early career were not exceptional, especially for a yard that tends to solidly in bumpers, Burst Ya Bubble was keeping the margins of defeat very manageable along the way, and he also had a couple of Ascot visits early in his hurdling career, so difficult tests were not being feared. That meant that in terms of potential, there was some sort of roughly spherical gas manifestation in a flexible liquid container waiting to be destroyed, usually by a small child or a dog. Or pesticides. In fact, the bubble did not quite burst but was stretching to the edge of its tolerance before he won a maiden hurdle at Uttoxeter in summer last year. What was also becoming clear was that despite a deceptively encouraging hurdles debut in a longer race, two miles was at that time his ideal distance. In 2018 he has become the two and a half miler that everyone was expecting, winning at Warwick over a furlong shorter than that and averaging a margin of six lengths in his three losses. Burst Ya Bubble also may have escaped the typecasting of summer jumper, only racing once after May this year although he only has one try on ground worse than good to soft and it has been the low point of his career. His record on easy tracks as a hurdler is 471213, with the seventh being a premature 2n 5f on heavy ground attempt and the two recent places being losses of barely a couple of lengths. Surely chasing beckons.

Handicap hurdles or handicap chases on an easy track

COURTOWN OSCAR     (Philip Kirby)

9 year old bay gelding     (Oscar – Courtown Bowe)     5/78571/1P11P31P/4P1223/12-

With all of those ones and twos in his form, plus some threes, it would rational to imagine that Courtown Oscar would been far too high in the handicap to be rescued by a smattering of peas. Or pees. Whether going down the vegetable or the urinary route, it does not matter, because he has one attribute that the handicapper finds it hard to overcome – stubborn persistence. So no matter what happens, when the ground is so bleakly water saturated that most horses would rather be at home, Courtown Oscar is moaning that three milers are over far too soon. He also has taken a liking to easy tracks. One UK-Jumping reader in an email referred to them as Goldilocks tracks – not to tight, not too galloping, just right. She may have been paying too much attention to the assessment of distant planets for potential to sustain recognisable life. On the subject of which, with his dam’s father not registered, the lack of a traceable pedigree and unusual love of adverse conditions may mean that Courtown Oscar is in fact a silicon-based life form. All that time they were sitting here, right under our noses. Anyway, in a belated veer towards relevance, the horse has a record on heavy ground and easy courses of 5711P3111. That is even better than it looks as the first two came in two mile novice hurdles, races which he would not have won on a point of principle, even if he could.

Races on an easy track, on heavy ground over 3m or more

MARKET ROAD     (Evan Williams)

8 year old grey gelding     (Tikkanen - Clydeside)     0/P58552/1311F3114F-4

Although originating in Ireland, Market Road took an untypical road to market in that country. He started out by being massively tailed off in a maiden hurdle. Having realised that they may have over innovated the then connections did go pointing after that, getting tailed off again before a better outcome in losing a confined hunts race. Next stop was British points, with a win sandwiched between losses to Stagecoach Jasper, who is currently 0/23 under Rules. Market Road has upped his game hugely since getting out of that horse's way, with five wins achieved so far. The theme that we are going for is fairly obvious, as five of them have been on easy, undulating venues. This takes his record on those kind of places to 511F114. The first was when Market Road was still finding his feet, the fall was at the first fence in the race, and the latest run was a loss of only four lengths. Where he muddies the water is by performing well outside the conditions - he has won at flat as a pancake Ffos Las - but it is a few ups and downs that smooth the Road to victory.

Handicap hurdles or handicap chases on an easy undulating track
Description
A thoughtful Market Road at Market Rasen. Perhaps he is wondering why Jose Mourinho is leading him up, and if he is destined to be the Paul Pogba of jump racing

REBOUND     (Anthony Honeyball)

5 year old bay gelding     (Big Bad Bob - Shine Silently)     2/1-

The first point of order for this horse d between losses to Stagecoach Jasper, who is currently 0/23 under Rules. Market Road has upped his game hugely since getting out of that horse's way, with five wins achieved so far. The theme that we are going for is fairly obvious, as five of them have been on easy, undulating venues. This takes his record on those kind of places to 511F114. The must be to try and race more often. He started out in March 2017, when he was second in a short distance bumper at Fontwell to Dell Oro, who has gone on to achieve a 136 rating as a hurdler. In third was Sensible Friend who has shown ability but is proving frustratingly difficult to win with. Rebound did not immediately bounce back from defeat, but did so slowly, not racing again until the start of this year. It was Ludlow and another short distance bumper. He outbattled Melekhov, who went on to narrowly win bumpers of his own at Fakenham and Hexham when upped to two miles. Third placed Flash The Steel had lost his previous race by a neck and went on to nab a bad event at Southwell in comfort. Fourth placed Laughing Luis won two bumpers of his own (although he did get turned over at odds of 1/5 on hurdling debut), and a couple further down the field have run well in defeat. That is a very solid message that it took a good performance by Rebound to win the race, but it might not be a sign of a stayer in the making.

Hurdles up to 2m 3f

TAYZAR     (Ruth Jefferson)

7 year old bay gelding     (Kayf Tara - Matilda Too)     5/7242-3

Nobody was in a rush to see him in action, so Tayzar gave point-to-points or flat racing the cold shoulder and made his first appearance in a bumper just after he turned five years old. As he was emerging from a yard with an exceptionally good bumper record, his twenty-eight lengths defeat was not encouraging. Connections decided that he should not be rushed into lerning the job and he had almost eight months off. Returning with a 74 lengths loss at Hexham, they must have wished they had struck when the iron was hot, around debut time. All was not lost, because despite being understandably short of bettng ring support on hurdles debut Tayzar was second, beaten only sixth lengths. Not quite a performance to describe as electric, but pretty solid all the same. Next up he was in a better looking race, so losing by ten additional lengths was not a disaster. Instead of a race the following calendar note was going for a wind op, and he has twice been placed at Market Rasen since, once a decent try, the other not so sharp, although the easy winner has since taken his winning run to four and the runner-up has three wins of his own. There may be a right-handed, or even just Market Rasen bias at work here, but presumably we will see Tayzar in handicaps, and chasing, soon.

Handicap hurdles or handicap chases over 2m 4f or more
Description
Tayzar is deeply unimpressed by the going report at Market Rasen

TROOBLUE     (Sue Smith)

6 year old grey mare     (Great Palm - Touch Of Ivory)     834334-

This mare first raced in November last year, getting stuffed on bumper debut. The nature of bumpers has changed over the years and it is far more common now for horses to recover from huge setbacks like a 33 lengths loss and go on to get victories at a modest level. In fact Trooblue only had to wait until Boxing Day before she showed her true colours, finishing third at Sedgefield. When hurdling in the new year, she did not blast into the job from the beginning, but her second try, at Market Rasen, was much better, defeated by only a length and a half. There was another solid show at Sedgefield before a slightly regressive offeringf at Hexham. For this Trooblue has been awarded a rating of 107 which would seem to be very workable for a mare that can still be improving. Trooblue is not shaping as if the sky is the limit, but she is capable of navy-gating herself to victory and he yard will not be shy of going over fences. The obvious note from what we have seen is that her best three races were on sharp tracks and the worst three were on easy and galloping.

Mares only handicap hurdles or handicap chases on a sharp track
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