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Ross O’Sullivan Betway blog: Reviewing my season so far 01 11 21

01 Nov | BY Ross O’Sullivan | MIN READ TIME |
Ross O’Sullivan Betway blog: Reviewing my season so far 01 11 21

The Betway ambassador reviews an impressive summer and discusses the jockeys and horses to follow for the rest of the campaign.

I’d like to start this season’s Betway blog by saying a big thank you to my whole team, who continue to work tirelessly to help push the yard forward.

Those efforts are being reflected in the results that we’re having on the track. There is no truer saying than ‘happy staff make happy horses,’ and, with everyone in great form, the horses have followed suit.

Summer winners

A really good summer started off at the back end of the previous National Hunt season with Call It Magic winning the Cross Country Steeplechase at the Punchestown Festival, and it started to snowball from there.

One of the most special winners I’ve had in my career came in June as Longbourn won a handicap at the Irish Derby meeting. I grew up on the edge of The Curragh, so that’s where I would always call home.

My parents both rode in their codes all the way up until they retired, and they used to take us to The Curragh as kids. It would have been the first course we went to and, while I’ve trained winners there in the past, having one on Irish Derby day was extra special. 

We went so close to having a special moment at the Galway Festival, too, when Benefit Run, who has been a magnificent horse for the yard, was just pipped on the line at a huge price. His owners are local publicans in Galway and would have had some party afterwards – and that was just with the horse finishing second! Imagine if it had won?

The same owners had a little bit of luck last weekend with another horse of ours called Theatre World, who got the job done at Galway after tipping up at the last on his previous run. They’d have got an extra kick out of him winning locally and you can guarantee there were a few sore heads and lost voices afterwards.

Newcomers into the yard

We’ve got a nice bunch of unraced and largely unnamed horses that have come into the yard, plenty of which have come from the Derby sale.

We’ve started cantering some of them and I’d like to think they could make bumper horses at the back end of the season. Once they’re named, I’ll nominate a horse to follow.

Horses for sale

We’ve got two cracking horses up for sale. The first is a lovely horse called Spring Bank. He’s by Galileo, has a smashing way about him and is currently rated 97 on the Flat. I can’t hide that I think he’s very, very exciting to go novice hurdling with.

We’ve also got Made For Minds who is able to be purchased. He won a nice contest at The Curragh and looks like he could be made for the jumping game.

Horses to follow from our yard

I think you’ll be hearing more about Sea Sessions. She’s got a lovely way about her and was only just beaten on the line at Punchestown on her debut.

 She was second to what was possibly a very good horse on Saturday [Fil Dor], but she’ll be able to win races as she keeps progressing, the dream would be to get her to the major spring festivals.

Call It Magic has been brilliant for us and still has loads of ability. His first big target could be the Becher Chase at Aintree in December.

We ran a lovely horse last weekend called State Of Honor. She tanked through her race, but we may have bumped into one in Gordon’s [Elliott] horse [Minella Crooner]. She’ll be winning races this season and is one to keep in your trackers. 

Favori Logique has done plenty of winning this summer and, as a result, has climbed up the ratings. He’s still showing me some improvement at home so, fingers crossed, he can keep doing it on the track.

We also ran a nice horse at The Curragh last week called Chrismoltisanti, who ran well but was just very green. He’ll not been seen this winter as he’s a Flat horse, but he’s one to remember for next season. He’s by The Gurkha, so won’t mind any cut in the ground.

Point-to-Point horse to follow

When I’m not racing under rules, I’m often at a Point-to-Point fixture and, hopefully, some of you readers got on some of the horses I put up at the start of last season. The season only kicked off six weeks ago, but we’ve already seen some really exciting horses you should put in your trackers.

I was at Loughanmore as we had Easca Mor running, and he did well to finish third in his race. He’s still learning his trade and will make a good staying chaser down the line.

I was mega impressed with a horse called Hartur D’Arc. He looked like an aeroplane. He absolutely bolted up. He travelled, jumped and put his race to bed very easy. I’d be surprised if one of the big owners of the game doesn’t snap him up.

The same could be said for Smiling Getaway, who sluiced up by 10 lengths. He was mightily impressive, and I think we’ll be seeing more of him in the future, too.

Jockeys

It is great to see Davy Russell back in the saddle. Davy is a real gentleman, a natural horseman, and I hope he has a fantastic season. He’s had a tough time of it with some serious injuries that take a toll on a man’s body, but he’s mentally strong and has got himself back riding winners. I hope he rides a winner on the biggest stages this season.

It’s also a big season for plenty of young jockeys who are coming through. There are plenty to name, but I think this is a key season for Jordan Gainford, Darragh O’Keefe, Sean O’Keefe and Jack Foley.

They’re attached to big yards, so will ride plenty of winners, and could all be the next champion jockeys of this sport.

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Ross O’Sullivan

Ross O’Sullivan

Emerging Kildare-based trainer and one of Betway’s stable of racing ambassadors.

Ross O’Sullivan

Ross O’Sullivan

Emerging Kildare-based trainer and one of Betway’s stable of racing ambassadors.