Big River put his jumping issues behind him today and given a tactical waiting ride by Derek he galloped away with the three mile handicap chase at Kelso. A horse with huge talent he has been a focus for the team these past few weeks and their work has paid off; he will now aim for the Ultima Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
It was a satisfying afternoon for his owners The Two Black Labs and Colin and Debs and for Derek and us; three weeks ago we met to plan the spring for Big River and the A plan is still on track; while he had an awkward autumn, today Big River was relaxed and focused; it is a credit to everyone here from the schooling jockeys to those who look after his health and well being.. roll on March!
Earlier Katalystic allayed his trainer's fears that he might not like the heavy ground, and jumping well he ploughed through it until just finding the three mile trip beyond him a hundred yards from the post coming third; this was a great effort from him and we will see if he runs again or has a short break.
Well Above Par ran a solid race to be fifth; he possibly does need longer between runs but is racing to a level, while Slainte Mhor had a confidence boosting run and while he is still green he galloped to the line which bodes well for the future.