Internal Transfer (8YO Bay Gelding/E McNamara)
This horse finished a decent 4th in The Kerry National on only his 3rd chase start and first run in 153 days. It was quite the race to be pitched into given his inexperience. He travelled and jumped well, taking it up after the 10th, headed 2 out before plugging on.
He’s run well fresh before so I suspect he was fit enough, but he was also unproven over 3m (over fences) and of course at this level. His trainer was also a tad ‘cold’. His last two runs have been career bests on Racing Post Ratings (135) which would indicate there could be more to come. He’s lightly raced for his age and possibly fragile (unless he’s taken time to strengthen up) so it could be he only ever has 2/3 runs in him before needing a break. However, this run suggests he’s got more chases in him, and at a decent level.
He seems versatile as to ground conditions, with wins on soft/heavy/good. He’s 3/3 at Limerick.
The 1st and 2nd in this race should be worth keeping onside also.
The winner, Poker Party, is still unexposed over fences. Connections were patient with him here in order to build up his confidence in such a big handicap, and he received a peach of a ride from Rachael Blackmore. I do wonder if they may be more aggressive with him in future as that HU style is always fraught with more danger. 3m appears to be his trip over fences and it will be interesting where they go next.
I tipped the second, Ravenhill, who lost by a head, doing all his best work late on. On another day it would have been a different result but his jockey moved him up in good time. He did shape like a through stayer, again, and could be interesting over further – in marathon chases. Decent ground may be important but it’s more an unknown.