January ReviewPosted : February 12th, 2018
We only have a small team for the All-Weather this winter, but they have been in great form and we recorded seven winners in January.
Danzan was a very smart performer last year, finishing second in the big sales race at Doncaster before finishing in midfield in the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes. Rated 107, he made his reappearance in a Class 2 Conditions race at Kempton where he faced the highly rated and Group-placed Corinthia Knight. This rival had race fitness on his side and that proved decisive in the final stages of the race, with Danzan finishing runner-up. Danzan quickly made amends at Chelmsford at the end of the month, justifying long odds-on favouritism and making all under Oisin Murphy for a facile success in a Novice Stakes. He is likely to head to the All Weather Championships at Lingfield on Good Friday, but will have one more run before then in order to qualify. He is a lovely prospect and has made a great start to his three year old campaign.
Aiya took time to find his feet last year and still has plenty to learn, so it was great to see him make a winning handicap debut in what looked a competitive heat at Southwell, overcoming a slow start to win going away. A very attractive son of Declaration of War, he looks sure to progress further.
After Aiya’s success at Southwell we went on to record an across-the-card double for King Power Racing with Night Of Glory, who recorded a workmanlike success at Kempton Park the same evening. The son of Sea The Stars has since been placed over hurdles and could yet develop into a contender for the Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, though he will require another run in February before entries close at the end of the month.
Lady Perignon gained her reward for some good efforts in defeat on her three previous outings when making all over a mile at Lingfield Park in the hands of Jason Watson. Jason has made an excellent impression on the All Weather of late, riding five winners in January alone. Lady Perignon has since run very creditably off a higher mark and looks sure to continue to give a good account.
It was very pleasing to see Papa Stour shed his maiden tag on his second start since joining us from Ireland, winning impressively under Oisin Murphy at Wolverhampton. His subsequent defeat at Southwell came just five days later, and he remains capable of progressing further in time.
I was delighted to see Carouse and Perfect Illusion get off the mark in maidens at Lingfield Park, the former over seven furlongs and the latter over a mile and a half. Whilst Carouse had plenty of experience at two, he looks to have improved for being gelded, whilst Perfect Illusion’s 12-length success on debut was particularly eye-catching and will hopefully prove a springboard to better things.