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Ross O’Sullivan Betway blog: Season update 08 12 21

08 Dec | BY Ross O’Sullivan | MIN READ TIME |
Ross O’Sullivan Betway blog: Season update 08 12 21

The Betway ambassador reviews his season so far and picks out some horses to watch as we head into 2022.

Yard form and results

It’s crazy how quickly this year has gone but, overall, I’m very happy with the horses as we move into December.

As I mentioned last month, we’ve had some year in terms of results and that form has kept going even as we transition from the summer horses to the winter horses.

Paddy’s Planet was a good winner at Limerick in November for a new owner to the yard, Richard Murphy. I thought he was game in victory and you’d be confident in thinking that he’ll pay his way over jumps.

Favori Logique ran another cracker last time. I said he was still improving and that sentiment is still the same. He’ll find other opportunities to get his head in front and has been a joy to train this season.

Realistic Optimism also ran well first time up in what is often a very good bumper. He’s been showing some promise in his work, but you never quite know how they’ll perform on the track. The time looked good and I think there will be a few winners come from the race. He’ll probably run in another bumper over Christmas and we’ll make a plan after that.

Benefit Run has been a star for our yard and ran well at Fairyhouse, where he finished third behind Dunvegan, a good horse of Pat Fahy’s. It was good prize money to pick up and I’m sure we’ll have more fun days with him and his owners.

Samrogue got her heard in front at Dundalk last week. She’s a filly that is a homebred for an owner that’s been with us for a while, so that was very pleasing. She got 6lb for winning, but I don’t think that will stop her from going in again. She likes Dundalk and, if she gets a low draw – which is so key on that track – then she should be competitive in her grade.

You’d have to be thoroughly delighted with Sea Sessions, who came over to win at Aintree on Saturday. We thought she had a nice chance of getting placed, but she really saw it out well. Her owner is new to the yard and is based in Manchester, so it was great to get a winner for him at track that is local to him. After her success, we’d be thinking about races like the Fred Winter at the Cheltenham Festival.

Call It Magic is another who has given us some great days out and is planning on making a trip over to Cheltenham this weekend. He loves the cross-country game, so he’ll be running all of those types of races this season.

National Hunt season so far

We’ve seen some proper performances in November.

A Plus Tard was spectacular at Haydock a few weeks back. He looks as though he’s improved again and is a horse that has everything. He’s got plenty of pace, jumps well and clearly stays. He’ll be a tough horse to beat with all roads leading to Cheltenham and another crack at the Gold Cup.

Honeysuckle couldn’t have done any more in the Hatton’s Grace. They tried to test her fitness, with Danny Mullins making it a good gallop from the front on Stormy Ireland, but she was simply too good.

There was a huge crowd to see her – the place was rocking. I haven’t seen an atmosphere like that on a racecourse for a long while. There is no better advert for the sport than these top-class horses and she’s the biggest star in jump racing at the moment.

I thought Ronald Pump ran very well in second, too. It was his first run of the year and he had a tough task facing Honeysuckle on a trip at least half a mile too short, but he saw the race out well and did his best work late on. You’d have to be happy with him going into the top staying hurdle races this season.

We’ve had an unusually dry autumn and winter so far, so we’re yet to see the best of the novices make their seasonal debuts. You’d say as we move closer to Christmas, you’ll start seeing some of Willie’s [Mullins] big guns and I’m sure there will be plenty of other yards with horses who are just waiting for some soft ground.

Talking about novices, I thought My Mate Mozzie was the best horse in the race in the Royal Bond Hurdle. He flattened the last and they went a right crawl, which wouldn’t have been ideal for him. In a race with more pace, I think he’d comfortably turn around the form with the winner.

Point-to-Point

In last month’s column, I mentioned two horses to follow from the P2P scene who both made decent money at the Cheltenham Tattersalls November Sale.

Hartur D’Arc sold for £125k to Thomas Gibney, who has another very useful looking prospect in Mr Saxobeat.  

Smiling Getway was sold for £235k on behalf on Jean and James Potter, so you’d have to think he’ll end up in England.

I’m also keen to see the progression of two other horses who have recently been sold.

Artic Bresil made £305k at the same sales. He came out of Sean Doyle’s yard and we all know how well they’ve done in the past. I believe he has gone to Henry De Bromhead to be trained, too. He hasn’t won yet, but there was plenty of talk about him before, during and after the sales.

Saint Davy is another name to remember. He was sold to Jonjo O’Neill at the Goffs December Sale. He’s got a huge reputation and could be anything. He dotted up in a point at Quakerstown.

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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.