For the second time in as many months, AP McCoy rode a four timer at Worcester last week. His strike rate for the month of August was a phenomenal 40% and September is promising to be equally impressive, if not better. The 4 wins included a double on the day for trainer John Ferguson and owners, Bloomfields. The first of their two successes came aboard El Namoose in the bumper. The 5 year old flat bred, by Authorized, tasted victory at Musselburgh in January and went on to run in the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival in March where he put in a creditable performance but was reluctant to settle. McCoy gave him good cover in the Worcester race and he won easily, coasting home on the bridle. He could be an exciting prospect going forward. McCoy also steered home locally trained Marju’s Quest to win the Westlands Worcester sponsored handicap hurdle. The improving 4 year old who has won twice at Fontwell in recent weeks, comes from David Dennis’ yard at Hanley Swan.
Another local trainer enjoying a purple patch is Ian Williams, based at Alvechurch. Williams enjoyed a double at Plumpton on Sunday, both in the hands of Richard Johnson. Cool Sky followed up his recent Worcester win to beat Nicky Henderson’s Springinherstep by 3 lengths in the handicap hurdle, and Teak followed up for the trainer in the next race. Teak is a good example of the versatility of Williams’ string. The horse had been down to run in the Cesarewitch trial at Newmarket the day before, having won 3 times on the flat this year, but was a non-runner after the rain changed the going.
Most trainers are hosting seasonal open days to parade their winter prospects currently, with both David Dennis and Ian Williams opening their doors in the last couple of weeks. The dry forecast for the next month will undoubtedly have an effect on how soon we see the stars of the winter season have their first runs back on the racecourses, and will for the time being keep the field sizes relatively small due to the quick going.
There are interesting stats in the British Jumps Owner’s Championship table this week. The first 5 owners in order, read Mr John P McManus, Bloomfields, Paul & Clare Rooney, Mr RER Williams and Favourite’s racing (owners of Marju’s Quest). Three out of the five names listed against these owners as their horse with the most win and prize money have won at Worcester this summer and one came second, including at the top of the list, JP McManus’s horse, It’s a Gimme.
The racecourse, in conjunction with Boots, are raising funds for Macmillan Cancer Support during our meeting tomorrow, with a coffee morning prior to racing starting at 11am.