Horse Talk with Simon Jackson:
Top horse-racing tips and the latest news.
KIM Bailey will be doubly represented in the £200,000 Ladbrokes Trophy with 6-1 favourite Vinndication and 10-1 shot Two For Gold in the feature race at Newbury on Saturday.
Vinndication bids to build on a good run on his comeback when second to Cyrname in the Grade 2 bet365 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby on October 31.
That was his first run since finishing fourth to The Conditional (who reopposes) in the Grade 3 Ultima Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival and trainer Kim Bailey has said that Vinndication must run “very, very well” to be considered a realistic contender for the Cheltenham Gold Cup, where he is best-priced at 40-1 but as short as 25-1.
Vinndication, a winner of seven of his 11 starts that includes Grade 2 and Grade 3 wins at Ascot, schooled over fences at the recent ‘Newbury at the Ladbrokes Gallops Morning’ and his recent schooling has pleased Bailey.
“He didn’t jump as well as I’d hoped at Newbury but he’s done that before so I wasn’t worried as he was very fresh,” Bailey admitted. “We have schooled him since and he was brilliant. We are putting a pair of cheek pieces on to make him concentrate because in a big field you can’t afford not to be concentrating.”
“If he’s a Gold Cup horse he has to run very, very well in the race off nearly top weight,” said the in-form trainer who revealed that the forecast good ground was the reason for running stablemate Two For Gold at Newbury, in preference to a proposed start at Newcastle.
“Two For Gold has a very good profile for the race,” Bailey added. “It’s just a question of whether he stays the distance. My worry is he might not. But having said that his two best bits of form are over three miles over hurdles and over fences. The reason we had a change of heart is the ground which will help him get the trip. If he finishes third he will win more than if he won at Newcastle.”
The Ladbrokes Trophy is the highlight of the two-day Ladbrokes Winter Carnival on Friday and Saturday and the highlight of seven races sponsored by Ladbrokes on Saturday.
Ladbrokes’ spokesman Jon Lees said earlier today (Thursday): “Kim Bailey took his time before committing Vinndication to the Ladbrokes Trophy and now he has, the market has reacted. Even the yard’s second string Two For Gold is a 10-1 chance. Punters like a hot stable and Bailey and jockey David Bass are very much the team to follow right now.”
Horse Talk with Simon Jackson. Showcasing horse racing in London and the south east.