Princess home Before Midnight
Two runners are set to carry the Potter Group silks at Aintree on the opening day of the Grand National fixture and we are delighted to be represented at such a prestigious meeting which is broadcast all over the world!
4:40 Close Brothers Red Rum Handicap Chase
BEFORE MIDNIGHT (CHARLIE DEUTSCH)
Things haven’t quite gone as well as we’d hoped for Midnight so far this season, much of which is down to his previous excellent campaign where he graduated from a rating of 129 all the way up to 148 following victories at Cheltenham and Ascot, so it was always going to be difficult for the son of Midnight Legend to continue on an upward curve, but Sam Thomas’ charge has still posted some gallant efforts being placed in valuable Handicaps at Ascot this term, and since Cheltenham last time, the Handicapper has dropped him a further 3lbs, so he’s slowly but surely coming back down to a competitive mark (140) – in fact he’s 4lbs lower than when bagging the Hurst Park Chase at Ascot in 2021.
There’s no doubt tomorrow’s race is a tough contest, and he’d probably prefer the ground a little quicker, but his trainer reports him to be in good shape and he’s been away to the local Point to Point course for a gallop and a jump around, which is sure to do him well physically and mentally.
Whatever happens at Aintree, Before Midnight has been an absolute start for all of us and if he can run a good race and come back safe and sound, we’ll be very happy.
5:15 G2 Goffs UK Nickel Coin Mares’ Open National Hunt Flat Race
ALFIE’S PRINCESS (SAM TWISTON-DAVIES)
This gorgeous mare was purchased at the Cheltenham sale in March last year having won a Point to Point in Ireland under Derek O’Connor by an easy three lengths, but it’s fair to say it has been quite a long and winding road to get here after several niggly issues have meant she’s raced just once this season.
Thankfully none of the reasons for her absence from the track have been serious, mainly small bouts of coughing, spluttering and lacklustre pieces of work everytime she saw her name on the entry list! She also underwent a small wind operation.
But everything has gone smoothly in the lead up to this race and while it is a big ask to win this off the back of just one run (in December) her trainer, Sam Thomas, has always held her in the highest regard and there shouldn’t be any issues ground-wise.
To look at her, you’d be pretty confident she’ll develop into a smart chaser further down the line and there is no doubt her future lies over obstacles, but this is a great race to be part of and while we’re not saying by any means she will win, we’re all hopeful she can acquit herself well and we get the chance to learn a lot more about her.
No runners for us on Friday but on Saturday we do have the small matter of Our Power taking his chance in a certain race called the Grand National so check back here on Friday for a full look ahead to his chance and updates on the rest of our squad!