Friend of the blog. Alex Gould, has pulled together his annual list of UK pointers to follow. He’s kindly allowed me to share it on these pages. While Alex has a ‘proper job’ he has a keen eye for a horse, is a part time bloodstock agent on the side and has purchased a few horses who’ve successfully won plenty under rules, including for Dr Newland and Foxtrot Racing. One day I’ll be asking him to source something for the Racing To Profit Syndicate.
I’m generally ‘so so’ when it comes to ‘horses to follow’ lists, most of them I don’t find overly informative. However, information & insight such as this below is gold dust, as it’s generally not widely in the public domain and it’s a unique angle, from someone who ‘specialises’ in their craft. These horses won’t be in many ‘horses to follow’ lists, if any, and as such are worth reading, absorbing and adding to trackers.
Over to Alex…
Following on from the success of last seasons top 15, I’ve had another go this year.
The 2020 – 2021 UK point to point season was another cut short due to the Covid pandemic and the knock on effects of that. However, we still saw some lovely horses run who should now go on under rules, and are worth putting in your trackers.
I hope this list produces numerous winners and hopefully some will develop to be top class.
Please note this list only includes horses that have not yet made their debut under rules. (at the time the list was compiled)
1. POET’S CORNER (5 year old bay gelding Poet’s Voice x Helter Helter)
Trainer Nicky Tinkler does well with a small string and has sold some nice horses over the last few years, including to America.
This nice sized gelding has only had one run and that was at the tough Horny Castle track in April.
Sent off the 4/5 Favourite under jockey Joe Wright he was never far off the pace and jumped well in the main despite looking green at times. Hitting the front approaching 2 out, when Wright said go he moved away nicely.
The form of the race does not amount too much at this stage but it should be noted that the time was 6 minutes 53 seconds and he was clearly very green.
He stays well and will have learnt plenty from that race.
Snapped up at the sales by Neil King for 38k he should be followed closely.
I doubt he is a bumper horse but should come into his own with more racing experience over 2m4f on the track.
2. KING ARISE (4 year old grey gelding Kingston Hill x Aries Ballerina)
Thomas Weston was a top class point to point jockey and rode plenty of top class horses especially whilst retained by the Ruckers. Now plying his trade as a trainer he has made a great start to his new career and King Arise looks another smart prospect.
He ran in a 2 mile bumper at the undulating Garthorpe track. The race was run at a slow tempo initially before turning into a bit of a sprint.
King Arise was ridden mid division early by jockey Luke Scott before moving closer with 3 furlongs to go. He hit the front with a furlong to go and drew right away to win by 5 lengths.
It was not so much the time of the race but it was the way he went about it. He had his head down and galloped strongly. He looks a very willing partner for any jockey.
Purchased privately and now in the hands of Dr Richard Newland, for the very successful Foxtrot Racing Syndicate, I expect to see him in a bumper early in the Autumn where he should take plenty of beating.
Stepping up in trip will be no problem and a lovely horse to follow moving forward.
3. DASH FULL OF CASH (4 year old bay gelding by Milan x Cashalass)
The move by Irish trainer and owner to move some horses to UK trainer Chris Barber, along with Jockey Tiernan Roche, caused much discussion in the point to point world. The purists of the sport being especially vocal against the move.
However on the 3rd April at Kimble, Dash Full Of Cash made his debut under Roche in a 3 mile maiden on heavily watered good ground.
Jumping well throughout he was initially caught out by the bold running front runner who did not stop, but once in second and full flow he flew home, pinging the last like a horse with plenty left in the tank and only going down by a length in the end.
You could make a strong argument that the best horse in the race came 2nd.
He was S=sent off to the Cheltenham sales where Lucy Wadham paid 45k for him.
I expect to see him in a winter bumper, but will expect to see more once he goes over hurdles over 2m4f +.
Chasing will be the long term project for this smashing Milan gelding.
4. ZERTOPEK (4 year old grey gelding by Montmartre x Lisette Bleue)
Alan Hill had a tremendous season training and Zertopek looks to have a very bright future ahead of him.
Making his debut under Will Biddick at Edgcote on watered good ground he raced mainly in third position. As the pace really started to lift he belted 5 out, his own real mistake in the race, but it showed what the horse was all about as he then pinged 4 out before jumping into the lead 3 out.
He looked home and hosed approaching the last but started to tire and wander under pressure, jumping the last he still had a length advantage but was overhauled by a far more experienced rival.
He went down on his sword and will have learnt alot from the outing.
It should be noted that the horse has a very rounded front leg style with a high knee action so soft ground will probably be required.
He travelled well this day and I would like to see him in a soft ground bumper initially, before going hurdling.
As far as I can see he has not been sold so could well step next door and run for rules trainer Lawney Hill.
A very bright prospect.
5. WILD BREEZE (5 year old bay gelding by Pour Moi x Nerissa)
Ollie Pimlott has now taken a license out to train under rules, with Wild Breeze his last point to point winner.
Wild Breeze was very well touted before his debut in a 2m point to point bumper at Garthorpe, going off the 6/4 favourite under top amateur jockey Tommie O’Brien.
This giant horse showed a lovely way of going about him, travelling well before being overtaken 2 furlongs out. However he stuck his neck out, head down and kept galloping, getting back up inside the final furlong to win going away.
It was a performance that really took the eye.
Sold at the sales for 40k after he is now in the care of Richard Hobson.
This is not a bumper horse so I wouldn’t be surprised to see him go straight over hurdles.
The old saying is very true with this fella – anything he does over hurdles really will be a bonus. A very bright prospect when going over fences and 3 miles.
He could well be a long range horse for your tracker but keep with him and he will reward you in the mid to long term.
6. NIGHT DUTY (5 year old bay gelding by Kalanisi x Lerichi)
Trainer Fran Nimmo had a quiet start to the season but finished it with a bang.
Night duty had a debut to remember under Foxhunter winning jockey James King.
Always prominent early he took up the running around halfway before simply galloping and jumping the opposition into submission. The final distance was 18 lengths but in all truth it could have been so much further, but King steadied his mount right down approaching the last and allowed him to coast home.
Sent to the sales and fetching 65k, he is now in the hands of Fergal O’Brien who is doing very well with ex point to pointers.
He has the pace and class to contest some good races down the line.
I fully expect to see him out in the autumn starting out in bumpers. If Paddy Brennan takes the ride then he will be well fancied.
I could see this horse running up a bit of a sequence before the very heavy ground comes, and then coming back out in the spring.
7. LYRICAL GENIUS (4 year old bay gelding by Milan x Rheinland)
The second horse from the Dunne/Barber/Roche trio.
This good sized Milan gelding had one run in April at Dingley, in a 3 mile maiden on mainly good ground.
He was always front rank and jumped well. He displayed plenty of greeness throughout and was often just being nudged and nurdled by Roche but he kept finding and won by 3 lengths.
The race form is not worth alot, with the non stayer The New Kid back in second, however it was the way he responded to Roche that caught the eye. He was so green and there will be so much more to come from him.
He didn’t sell well at the sales and Charlie Longsdon picked him up for just 32k privately.
I expect to see him out very early, maybe even the back end of summer. He could be a good horse for betting exchange punters as he could be one that runs slightly on and off the bridle in races.
Ideal conditions are difficult to gauge at this stage, but good or slightly softer over 2m – 2m4f seem a good starting point.
(Update: won on his rules debut in a bumper at Warwick)
8. BLACKWELL BAY (4 year old roan gelding by Carlotamix x Koochie Baby)
The second horse from the Tom Weston stable.
Blackwell Bay made his debut at Mollington in April, in a 2m4f maiden where he finished a close second.
He jumped well but was outpaced slightly once the taps were turned and jockey Luke Scott had to get after him.
The front 3 drew right away from the rest and jumping the last he was still in third, where he galloped hard to the line.
A good sized horse with plenty of size and substance he will improve alot.
Now in the care of Oliver Greenall, he will be out in the autumn and a bumper will be a good starting spot.
He gallops well so expect to see him make the running, so could be one to trade in running.
2 mile – 2m4f hurdles should see him come into his own.
9. HERON CREEK (4 year old bay gelding by Leading light x Campanella)
The final horse from the Tom Weston yard and probably the most unlucky horse on the list.
Heron Creek made his debut under James Jeavons at Mollington in early April. The conditions were awful with heavy rain and wind.
Taking up the running 3 out he drew away from the field and still held a good advantage jumping the last. However the hill at Mollington, conditions and inexperience meant that Heron Creek hung badly left handed towards the paddock exit before being overhauled by two rivals late on.
The best horse in the race came 3rd which could see us get a decent price when he goes under rules.
Now in the very capable hands of Dr Richard Newland, he should improve further. He could well be a bumper type early on and if Sam Twiston-Davies takes the ride, take note.
Moving forward he will excel over middle distances over hurdles and fences.
I expect this guy to be a regular visitor to the winners enclosure in the coming season.
There is a huge amount to like about him and the sire is getting plenty of winners.
10. SCOTCH ON DA ROCKS (4 year old bay gelding by Fame and Glory x Final Episode)
Tom Ellis and Gina/Jack Andrews are now established as a real point to point power house and with Scotch On Da Rocks, they look to have had a real quality individual on their hands.
On debut he beat number 8 on this list, Balckwell Bay.
He was always prominent under Jack and showed real guts and determination to stay on well fending off Blackwell Bay.
He is a real eye catcher of a horse and very much a chaser in the making.
He went to the sales and was snapped up by Highflyer Bloodstock for 80k.
He is now in the care of Ben Pauling, who after a couple of quiet seasons has started to have winners again.
I don’t think he is a bumper type and will probably require 2m4f to start with. If Pauling does start him off over 2 miles then a watching brief could be advised.
When stepping up in trip, with a handicap mark, I expect to see him rattle up a sequence before going chasing.
This is a very nice big horse who will require a bit of time but could well be one of the best long term.
11. ANOTHER MYSTERY (4 year old bay gelding by Norse Dancer x Misstree Pitcher)
One of the most talked about performances of the season.
Another mystery beat Dash Full Of Cash, number 13 on this list.
Under Jack Andrews he made all the running at Kimble and was a potato field clear at one point, before getting very tired late on holding on to win by a length from the fast finishing runner up.
The breeding and performance suggests that 3 miles is too taxing for this youngster at this time of his career.
At the sales he went to Lucy Wadham for 55k.
I am very interested in seeing this horse in a bumper as he showed real speed and is a bold runner.
The minimum trip looks perfect for him at this stage in his career and I’d be very disappointed if could not turn out to be a festival horse come March.
12. FLAMING AMBITION (4 year old bay gelding by Fame and Glory x Gran Chis)
The final horse from the Dunne/Barber/Roche trio on the list.
Maisemore Park stepped up this season and was rewarded with some top class racing.
The 2m5f maiden on the 30th March could well have been one of the best maiden races all season.
Flaming Ambition was always prominent under Roche but showed signs of greeness, with Roche bumping him along at times.
From 3 out he really moved on and drew a few lengths ahead of the runner up, he was thrown at the last and jumped the fence almost too boldly, doing well to keep his feet on the landing side, before being driven out by Roche.
A fair sized gelding he went to the sales but was led away unsold. He now finds himself in the capable hands of Oliver Greenall.
It’s going to be interesting to see how they plan out the coming campaign for Flaming Ambition. He is more than capable of winning a bumper and being successful over 2miles in hurdle races. If they do that he could win one or both.
However the yard like to land a touch so will we see him being handicapped? That is to be seen. If they do go down the handicap route I fully expect him to run up a quick sequence and he could be one to target a big handicap through the season, with more racing under his belt.
13. ITSALLINTHECLOUDS (5 year bay/grey gelding by Cloudings x Carrie Bradshaw)
The last horse on the list from the all conquering Tom Ellis yard.
Not making his debut until he was 5, which is not unusual for horses by Cloudings, and he has plenty of grey about him.
Under Gina Andrews at Aldington on the 16th April, this big sized gelding was always going well.
He took up the running 2 out and drew right away with the runner up.
He got on top approaching the last and won going away.
He is a frame of a horse still so should improve a ton for this summer on his back.
The ground was good to firm that day so I expect to see him out in the back end of summer.
He is not a bumper type and will require 2m4f to be at his best. He could be a little bit missed by the market as I expect people to think he will require time. Although I agree with that slightly, he is already 5 so I think he can win a novice/maiden hurdle before becoming a very good chaser.
There will be a big pot to be won with this guy. At this stage I am unsure who will train the horse under rules so it’s difficult to work out future plans.
A cracking horse with a very bright future.
14. ADJOURNMENT (5 year old bay gelding by Court Cave x Cherry Eile)
The twice raced Adjournment is a very good prospect and carries a slightly different profile to most on this list.
He actually made his debut in March 2020, where he was second at Larkhill.
We didn’t see him for another year where he turned up at Maisemore Park, finishing runner up again behind number 4 on this list, Flaming Ambition.
I think Adjournment could well be the better long term prospect of the two and will probably take a different career path.
Adjournment is very much a chaser and will be better for some cut in the ground.
He was just slightly outpaced by Flaming Ambition but he showed tremendous battling qualities and was not stopping at the line.
He is another who has ended up at Oliver Greenall’s yard, after Dan Astbury paid 45k for him.
Again it is difficult to know how the Greenall yard will go with him. He is not a bumper type so would be looking at laying him in one of them.
If they get him handicapped over hurdles, keep an eye out for them going straight over into a novice handicap chase.
An intriguing horse to follow and another great prospect from the Fran Nimmo and Charlie Posted yard.
15 SINGASONGSAM (4 year old bay gelding by Black Sam Bellamy x Vin Rose)
Jack Teal was injured for most of the season so was unable to ride much, but he turned his hand to training with plenty of success in recent seasons. His mother trains greyhounds for a living.
The twice raced Singasongsam made his debut under the tall John Dawson and came 3rd at Garthorpe, where he hung badly left and showed plenty of inexperience.
He was then given 3 weeks to get over this and reappeared at Hexham point to point on the 15th May, producing a quite dazzling display that seems to have gone unnoticed by most.
He was held up early on and just picked off his rivals one by one, jumping quick and slickly. He led approaching 2 out and drew right away to win by 12 lengths but it could have been so much more.
The race was over 2m4f on good ground and he simply bounced off it.
He went to the sales and Dr Richard Newland bought him for just 35k, which could be an absolute bargain.
Now he is not the biggest horse and is around 16 hands.
Just a 4 year old I expect him to win autumn bumpers and hurdles before having a winter break. I’d be very disappointed if he didn’t appear at a spring festival.
Keep a very close on this guy with Sam Twiston-Davies on. A horse with a real engine and a tremendous way of going about him. He is my pick of the season.
Many thanks for reading and good luck for the season.
My thanks to Alex for letting me post this on here. A superb, informative read, and plenty there for the notebooks, in the short, medium and long term.
Thanks for reading, Josh