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March Update

Posted : April 24th, 2013

Our sole representative at the 2013 Dubai Carnival was the Pearl Bloodstock-owned Side Glance who, following a 4th in the Jebel Hatta on Super Saturday at the beginning of the month, ran one of the best races of his career to fill the same position in the Dubai World Cup, picking up over £300,000 in prize-money in the process.

He is a wonderfully consistent horse who has now finished in the first four on four of his seven starts at the top level and he will now go straight to Royal Ascot for either the Queen Anne (in which he finished third last year to Frankel) or the Prince Of Wales’s, following which I am hopeful he will go on to contest several of the top 1m2f races worldwide.

At home, the weather caused the postponement of the Lincoln for the first time in living memory and, with the start of the turf season marked by heavy ground, we haven’t yet had our first runner of the season on grass. However, I was delighted to record five winners on the All-Weather this month.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s Thistleandtworoses made an impressive winning debut at Kempton Park to get us off the mark for the month, making all the running in a 1m maiden under David Probert. A well-bred sort, I hope he can develop into a useful colt in time.

Martin and Valerie Slade’s Benzanno improved throughout 2012 and he continued that upward curve on his seasonal reappearance, coming home strongly to win narrowly in a competitive class 2 handicap at Lingfield Park under Thomas Brown. He has only been upped 2lbs for that win and I am hopeful there is plenty more to come from him.

The Kingsclere Racing Club have a strong-looking team of horses this season and got off the mark for 2013 with Taglietelle, who made all the running to justify favouritism in a 1m4f maiden at Kempton Park. Runner-up in a competitive handicap at Newmarket last term, he could be set for an exciting year. The KRC’s Intransigent was only narrowly denied on his reappearance at Wolverhampton and he is being prepared for a tilt at the Wokingham in June.

An hour later, Jim and Fitri Hay’s Melvin The Grate made it two wins from three career starts on his handicap debut in the hands of Jamie Spencer. Racing a little keenly and still showing signs of inexperience, he is open to plenty of improvement and could develop into a useful miler in due course.

It is unlikely that I will train a shorter-priced winner this season than You Da One, who justified odds of 1-20 in a three-runner sprint maiden at Lingfield Park. Owned by Mr and Mrs Gorell/Mr and Mrs Pausewang and ridden by Liam Keniry, he won by an eased down seven lengths and looks capable of making his mark in handicap company.