Double at Chepstow on Friday

The ground at Chepstow was very testing on Friday which really suited Thomas Patrick in the novices’ chase.

He jumped well for his first start over fences and he should make a nice staying chaser for Tom Lacey as the season goes on.

Rock My Style showed a good attitude in the novices’ hurdle. He kept finding for me when I asked him.

He’s two from two this year over hurdles, but his future definitely lies over fences where he should really come into his own.

Defi Du Seuil at Leopardstown

We were obviously disappointed with Defi Du Seuil in the Irish Champion Hurdle.

He travelled really well but stopped very quickly.

It is frustrating because we know he’s a very good horse but there is something that is just not quite right at the moment.

He has come out of the race fine which is the main thing and it is now a case of trying to pinpoint what is troubling him before we can go again.

It is far too early to decide about Cheltenham. We need to get him back to where he was last year before we discuss any future plans.

Other action over the weekend

Even though he didn’t win, I thought it was a step in the right direction for Faugheen in the Irish Champion Hurdle.

He obviously needs to improve from that run, but I definitely wouldn’t be writing him off yet.

He is a dual Cheltenham Festival winner and if there is anyone who can get a horse back fit and firing, it is Willie Mullins.

We didn’t learn anything more about Buveur D'Air on Saturday at Sandown but he showed his well-being. He is still very much the one to beat in the Champion Hurdle.


It was hard not to be impressed by Samcro on Sunday at Leopardstown.

He looks to be a very talented horse who is continuing to improve.

They haven’t confirmed which race he will go for at Cheltenham but wherever he turns up he will be a short-priced favourite.

He is a very exciting prospect for Gordon Elliott.

Edwulf’s win in the Irish Gold Cup was a lovely story after what happened to him at Cheltenham.

It really shows the importance of racing’s veterinary services and that horse’s welfare is of the highest importance.

It was a great training performance by Joseph O’Brien to be able to get the horse back after the incident at Cheltenham.

He beat a very strong field and it was the performance of the weekend.

The whole two days racing at Leopardstown was a huge success and hopefully it will go from strength to strength in years to come.

There were plenty of people from Britain on my plane over which shows the interest it has generated. That can only be good for racing.

I think the whole weekend is very much here to stay. It is very exciting to have a big new festival in the racing calendar.

This week

The plan is to run Western Ryder on Thursday at Huntingdon.

He didn’t cope with the soft ground in the Tolworth at Sandown so we definitely feel a sounder surface will be much more to his liking.

He schooled well last week, so is definitely one to look forward to.