Don’t miss the latest column from Unibet ambassador Nico de Boinville as he looks ahead to a big weekend for Seven BarrowsFebruary 23, 2019
“Read the thoughts of five-time Champion Trainer Nicky Henderson and stable jockey Nico de Boinville exclusively at Unibet each week throughout the Jump Season. Unibet are an award-winning sports betting and casino operator with over 16 million customers, and proud sponsors of the Unibet Champion Hurdle, The Irish Gold Cup and betting partner of the Investec Derby.”
I’M hoping you’ll see an Angel hovering over the winners’ enclosure at Kempton this afternoon.
Angels Breath (3.00) – one of our big Cheltenham hopes – has his prep race in the Dovecote.
Has got to shoulder a 5lbs penalty after winning an Ascot Grade 2 on his hurdles debut but, if he’s as good as we all think he is, he is well up to the job.
He needs to be winning and doing it fairly convincingly if he’s to go to Cheltenham for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle with his tail up.
He does need the experience before going to the Festival – especially as they only jumped four hurdles at Ascot – but he’s shown us all the right signs at home.
It was the right race to run in first time out and I liked the way he quickened up and put distance between him and Danny Kirwan.
I schooled him on Thursday and he was electric. I’m really hopeful he can do the business and that it will be a nice prep race.
He’s been ready to go for a while now and the shutdown due to the equine flu outbreak slightly scuppered our plans.
This race has come along at the right time and it gives us the chance to freshen him up.
He’s one of those horses who does excite you – helps you get up in the morning.
My other ride today is on Burrows Edge (1.15), who hasn’t run since Sandown in April last year – 301 days.
That was over 2m and he just couldn’t go with them before staying on to finish sixth in a good race won by Ballymoy.
He steps up to 2m5f today and that should be his trip.
He’s a nice horse and is a chaser in the making really. The plan is to go chasing with him next season – I have schooled him over fences and he jumps well.
His wins at Market Rasen and Hereford last season came on soft but I think he wants this good ground – he’s a good-moving horse.
He schooled well on Thursday and I’m just looking for a nice run back.
Hopefully, that will set him up for a bit of fun throughout the spring.
I’m off to Fontwell on Sunday to ride Whatswrongwithyou (2.20) in the novices’ chase.
He’s been going well at home and I was impressed with him when he won at Ffos Las last time. I put his head there on the line – that’s the way he has to be ridden.
You can’t burn him out too soon.
HOTTEST IN RACING
He definitely needs a bit of cut in the ground so I’m hoping it won’t dry out too much.
I think he’s being aimed towards the Grand Annual at Cheltenham. He might need to go up a bit in the weights to get in so he needs to run well tomorrow.
Cheltenham is getting closer all the time but there’s plenty of good racing between now and then.
There’s no point worrying about Cheltenham at this stage and you don’t want to be trying to protect yourself.
I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing and hopefully we’ll all get there in good form.
Might Bite is one of those starting to blossom. He put in a really good piece of work last Saturday and it was definitely better than he worked earlier in the season.
He might not have shown his best form this season but if anyone can turn that around it’s the boss.
We’re very happy with him and I’m certainly not as despondent as I was after the King George.