Call could improve for comeback
Top jockey Wayne Hutchinson is back with his latest column after riding over Christmas at Wincanton and Kempton.
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I started off on Boxing Day at Wincanton on board Shady Lane in the mares' novices' hurdle and she ran okay.
She did not really handle the ground but is progressing with each run and she will be better served once she goes handicapping.
She has a bit of scope and she jumped and travelled nicely but it was just that the ground took a hold as it was so testing. She will want better going when she finds her level in a handicap.
First Morning was unplaced in the novice handicap hurdle and for me he feels like a spring or summer horse. He did not cope with the ground and he will be seen in a better light when it is his time of year.
Ardlui travelled very well through the Pertemps Qualifier and jumped nicely so I thought I would be in with a good chance turning for home.
The minute he came off the bridle he did not handle the ground and he wants better going - you can draw a line through that run.
He has won on soft on the Flat and over hurdles but the weather we have had recently has made it totally different conditions and it is finding horses out. He is not overly big either and it was just too much for him.
Easy Breesy is a young horse who ran in the bumper and he has also travelled well until leaving the back straight when the ground has taken a toll.
The conditions just exposed his weakness as a young horse and he will be better off going novice hurdling now on some better ground if we can find it!
Charlie (Egerton, trainer) said to me beforehand that if he was not handling the ground to look after him as it can take an age for them to get over a run in those conditions and pull the guts out of them.
I was at Kempton Thursday and I would have to say Bunglasha Lady was disappointing in the mares' handicap hurdle.
She did not handle the going and folded very quickly but nothing has come to light - so hopefully we can draw a line through that and she can bounce back.
Kumbeshwar was second to Sanctuaire and he has run another very solid race - he takes them very well.
He would probably not want the ground as deep as it was but he has run a mighty fine race and you will see him next chase Sprinter Sacre round in the Victor Chandler at Ascot and hopefully pick up some more prize money.
I did not think that I would win on Kumbeshwar as although Sanctuaire looked beaten, Wishfull Thinking then went clear. The minute he folded then Sanctuaire picked up again from the back of the third last so I always thought I would be second.
Iona Days ran really well in the three-mile handicap chase and he had come on from his first run. It was a muddling race but jumped round lovely and stuck to his task so remains in good form and should press on now through the winter as he handles the ground.
I am back on board Bakbenscher at Newbury on Saturday and he has a six-pound penalty for his win at Haydock last weekend.
We have no worries about the conditions and although it is a competitive race again, he is in good order and we are hopeful about his chances.
Kuda Huraa makes his debut for Alan King in the closing event at Newbury and was a dual winner on the Flat for Roger Varian. He has pleased us at home and we are looking forward to get him started.
I have two rides at Taunton on Sunday - Over The Rubicon and Hero's Call - and I rode both last time out.
Over The Rubicon needed his run at Plumpton and hopefully he will have come on for that but I think he will be seen in a better light once he finds his level in handicaps.
Hero's Call ran at Hereford and he did better than his finishing position as he got tired leaving the back straight.
If he strips fitter, I would expect him to run a good race.