There is always a bit of a lull between Cheltenham and Aintree, but, low-key week of racing or not, we have found a horse that could be worth following...
Not for the first time this season the Alan King-trained Dundee shaped well in defeat, producing a career-best effort at Newbury as he finished runner-up to a horse that had been rejuvenated by the application of a first-time hood...
Not for the first time this season the Alan King-trained Dundee shaped well in defeat, producing a career-best effort at Newbury as he finished runner-up to a horse that had been rejuvenated by the application of a first-time hood. The stop-start gallop which prevailed didn't suit the patiently-ridden Dundee, but he stayed on in eye-catching fashion, shaping as if he would have been better suited to a stronger gallop or more forceful tactics, and he emerged with his reputation enhanced.
Dundee had shaped encouragingly on his previous start at Doncaster, finishing fourth in a well-contested three-mile event, but the way in which he weakened close home suggested that he found the stamina test too much. Pleasingly, Dundee's strong-finishing Newbury display allays any concern about his staying power - even acknowledging there was a steady gallop - and he will continue to give a good account, be it over hurdles in the immediate future, or over fences next season.
Close House - Has faced some stiff tasks over fences and could yet do better.
Many Clouds - Likeable type that has some solid form and will continue to give a good account.
Famousandfearless - Seemingly well regarded and type to improve for switch to handicaps.
Champagne At Tara - Shaped well on hurdling debut under considerate ride. Not knocked about last time.
Regal Encore - Has entered handicaps on a fair mark and is sure to progress once stable strike form.
Champagne West - Progressive novice that rattled up a hat-trick in good style and will make a chaser.
Pass Muster - Still potentially well treated over hurdles based on fairly useful Flat form.
Dungeness - Shaped well under an aggressive ride at Plumpton and there could be better to come.
Benefit Cut - Possibly found run coming too soon at Leicester and worth another go.
Tap Night - Smart chaser who remains unexposed and can win off current mark.
Clever Cookie - Improving rapidly and impressed with the way in which he travelled at Musselburgh and Kelso.
If In Doubt - Lightly raced and unexposed as a staying hurdler. Still improving and boasts solid form.
Chance Du Roy - Shaped well at Ascot and looks likely to give another good account at Aintree.
Holywell - Slowly getting the hang of things over fences and impressed when winning at Cheltenham.
Fond Memory - Shaped well over an inadequate trip at Newbury and remains open to improvement.
Buywise - Went close in spite of numerous jumping errors and clearly still fairly handicapped.
Cause of Causes - Unexposed over staying distances and may have won without last-fence blunder at Cheltenham.
Claret Cloak - Remains open to improvement over fences and would have won without late error in the Grand Annual.
Dundee - Has been shaping well in defeat and will continue to give a good account.