It’s a Super Saturday for Potter Group and James and Jean Potter Ltd as we have four runners spread across two meetings and after a rather slow start to 2023, we’re looking forward to what could potentially be a big day.
Our Power would be the most high profile runner of the day for Potter Group in Kempton’s Coral Trophy at 3:00 which is live on @ITVRacing and @RacingTV. Trained by Sam Thomas, the son of Power was forced to miss the core of the jumps season after winning in style at Ascot before picking up a leg injury which ruled him out of the Coral Gold Cup at Newbury in November. It was extremely disappointing that he was withdrawn on the actual day of the race but goes to show how fragile racehorses are; they are certainly not machines and you can bet your bottom dollar the likes of Nicky Henderson and Paul Nicholls will be having many sleepless nights worrying about their Festival hopefuls with only three weeks until the Cheltenham showpiece next month!
Obviously it’s always a terrible shame when horses get injured but there may be some positives to take from his enforced break which is that he arrives here a fresh horse and clearly goes well first time out, as his victory at Ascot on his seasonal bow will testify.
He was third in the corresponding race last year before running an excellent race to finish fifth in the Ultima at Cheltenham and Sam Thomas has had this race in mind for quite some time.
The Grand National is where we’d like to end up but he may struggle to get in off his current mark of 141 – in an ideal world he’d run well here, go up a few pounds and be guaranteed a berth in the Aintree showpiece, but as it is the weights have already been announced and he currently needs 21 horses to come out to be given the chance to take part. Unfortunately there is also no winners penalty system so we’re very much in no man’s land when it comes to getting a run.
Some people may suggest that Our Power could’ve run before the cut off point of February 19th but he was unable to do so due to his injury and there aren’t many other options, especially with the ground being so firm this winter.
It is actually quite disappointing bearing in mind the race is still eight weeks away and one trainer is responsible for eight of the top 40 while another could run as many as five - which equates to 32% of the whole field potentially handled by just two trainers. Perhaps this is something the BHA might consider looking into to ensure everyone gets a fair crack of the whip (no pun intended 😉) and are given the opportunity to take part in horse racings most famous steeplechase.
Dancing In Brazil is set to take his chance in the National Hunt Flat race at 5:20 and returns to the course off the back of an excellent effort when third in Listed Company at Cheltenham on New Years Day. Alan King has always held the son of Blue Bresil in very high regard and if the videos of him working on the gallops are anything to go by, James and Jean Potter Ltd have an exciting prospect on their hands.
It’s a typically good Kempton Bumper and Nicky Henderson’s Iolaos Du Mou looked very classy when winning on debut at Newbury. He does however have a penalty which will make things harder and while Dancing In Brazil has the same, because he’s only a four year old, he receives weight from his elders which means he comes into this carrying 10st13lbs unlike Henderson’s charge who has 11st11lbs. Brook Bay cost £380k at the Tingle Creek Sale last month having won an Irish Point to Point and is an obvious danger from the Jonjo O’Neil stable. It looks a very good race but we’re happy with our ammunition and are looking forward to seeing how he fares. Tom Cannon will be doing the steering.
Galileo Silver has his first start since July in the Pertemps Qualifier at 3:07 live on @SkySportsRacing. Charlie Deutsch comes in for the ride and the gallant grey needs to finish in the first four to qualify for a crack at the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham next month. He’s a big brute of a horse who often carries a fair bit of condition but he’s been in training for quite some time so should be ‘straight’ enough to do himself justice and a stiff three miles on Good to Soft ground should be perfect. The cheekpieces replace the visor and hopefully he can put himself in the picture for the Festival.
In the concluding Bumper at 4:52, Choccabloc carries the silks of James and Jean Potter Ltd and the Kelvin Hughes’ and was an extremely eyecatching third on his racecourse bow at Wincanton on Boxing Day. He is the most gorgeous son of Blue Bresil out of Chocca Wocca, herself a daughter of Chomba Womba who did so well for Nicky Henderson, and you’d like to think he wouldn’t need to improve too much to be on the premises. He renews rivalry with Beat The Bat who was beaten a short head into second at Wincanton so is arguably a ‘winner’ without a penalty, but the winner of that race came out and produced a fine run to finish a close up fifth in a good Bumper at Ascot last week which is decent form. The long, galloping straight will definitely suit Choccabloc and it will be an interesting half an hour between 4:50 and 5:20 when two smart bumper horses continue their road to possibly helping provide James and Jean Potter Ltd with an elusive Grade One success – there is definitely no harm in dreaming 😴