Runaway win brings switch to bigger test
KARINGA Dancer bade a winning farewell to hurdling at Aintree on Saturday and now embarks on what Harry Fry expects to be an exciting future over fences.
Following the seven-year-old's runaway success over the smaller obstacles in a 2m1f handicap, the trainer from Seaborough near Crewkerne admitted: "This performance was very pleasing and made it tempting to stay hurdling but the plan was always to give him one outing over hurdles this season and then go chasing – and I think we'll stick to plan A.
"Karinga Dancer has the potential to be much better over fences than over hurdles. We have schooled him over fences and he was very good. We'll look for a beginners or novice chase over 2m4f but I've nothing in mind yet."
The career for the son of Karinga Bay was transformed this time last year by a wind operation. In his first five races in bumpers and hurdles he had two seconds and a close third but had failed to win yet since the surgery he has been unbeaten in four runs.
FREE WHEATGERM WITH EVERY POND HEATER www.blagdon-water-gardens.c...View details
Protect your pond fish this winter. Purchase the resun 100w pond heater £39.99 from www.blagdon-water-gardens.co.uk and we will give you a pot of Tetra wheatgerm 1l winter fishfood worth £4.99 FREE
Contact: 01934 316673
Valid until: Friday, February 28 2014
After a three-month break he returned to land a jumpers' bumper on Kempton Park's all-weather surface in January and then scored impressively in a maiden hurdle at Wincanton during March by 10 lengths and a novices' hurdle by 14 lengths at Taunton a month later.
Aintree completed the hurdling hat-trick on his seasonal reappearance under Nick Scholfield, an engagement which the trainer chose in preference to the Grade Two Persian War Novices' Hurdle at Chepstow on the same day because the horse was more suited to the better ground at Liverpool.
Fry was also happy with the third place of Chemistry Master in the 2m handicap hurdle at Wincanton on Sunday: "We wanted more rain but it didn't come – there is a race to be won with him over that trip on softer ground."
The five-year-old former Flat performer with Jeremy Gask won a maiden hurdle over course and distance for Fry in March under Ryan Mahon but was ridden this time by the yard's 10lb claimer Martin McIntyre.
Buck's Bond completed an unfortunate double. On his last appearance in May the Nicholls grey had fallen at the 15th in a Wincanton chase. This time he lasted two more fences before hitting the deck in the 3m3½f marathon for the Desert Orchid Silver Cup.
Ditcheat stable jockey Daryl Jacob will not carry fond memories of the meeting as he ended up in hospital after tumbling from the yard's Polisky during an incident-crammed 2m5f novices' limited handicap chase in which just seven of 16 starters got home.
The Wincanton-based Irishman, who returned a month ago from shoulder surgery, had a suspected broken collarbone but X-rays showed only minor damage and he was expected to be back in action later this week.
The Nicholls/Jacob alliance had better luck at Fakenham on Friday when Wonderful Charm – winner of last year's Persian War Hurdle – opened his chasing career with a smooth victory over 2m6f.
It was the French-bred five-year-old's first run since March's World Hurdle.
By David Briers