If The Cap Fits back in Coral Hurdle at Ascot
Harry Fry is currently looking forward to watching If The Cap Fits defend his crown at the Coral Hurdle at Ascot.
Having filled the runner-up spot from the Elite Hurdle on his very first start of year, Clare Rooney-owned seven-year-old and both the Paul went one better in this close two-and-a-half-mile Grade 2.
He moved on to complete third over two miles and second in the National Spirit Hurdle over nearly two and a half hour prior to claiming Grade One glory in his first start in the spring over three kilometers in Aintree.
“The more it dries out the better, because he would not need it too testing,” said Fry.
“It was his very first attempt at three miles that day in Aintree, and he actually thrived – therefore we’re sticking to hurdles, and we’ll see where he could take us this campaign.
“He won this race last year. We thought it was a fine starting point again, and we’ll build from that point.
“He appears to maintain good order in your home, so that I hope he will run a nice race comeback”
If The Cap Fits renews competition with the Dan Skelton-trained mare Roksana, that had been beaten just a mind in a thrilling end to the Stayers Hurdle.
The daughter of Dubai Destination has the advantage of a series that is current, having completed a neck next to the popular Top Notch at Aintree a fortnight ago.
Skelton has made a decision to conduct his charge at Ascot, rather than wait on Monday for a Listed mares’ barrier at Kempton.
“Harry (Skelton) rode at Kempton a week, and it had been good ground, but she wants a little more cut inside,” said the coach.
“It’s Grade 2 and value a lot of cash – whereas with the greatest regard to Monday’s race, so it is worth a lot less.
“I expect she will step forwards for the run at Aintree, since she constantly wants at least a run to put her straight.”
The current market is led by the Call Me Lord, making his first appearance since completing third in March beneath top-weight in the Imperial Cup at Sandown of Nicky Henderson.
Henderson said:”This was a bit of a frustrating season , since he had a few niggly problems which kept him out of action, but he ended on a great note at the Imperial Cup.
“He’s in very good form, but it’s a very good race. It’s probably an ideal trip, beause he stays two-five around Sandown.
“The only thing he’s got to do is go bankrupt, so our hands are quite tied as to what we could do – you would not need to go another way around.
“I believe space and soft ground does not matter , but the one-piece piece does. Handicaps are not much use for him now, so we have to develop into these kind of races and see just how we can climb.”
Le Patriote is a winner within distance and the course for Dr Richard Newland – and – rounded off season and at the Swinton Hurdle at Haydock.
“He’s training well, but it is his first run of this season and it is a step up in class for him personally,” said Newland.
“I am quite pleased with him. Whether he’s up to this degree or not, I am unsure, but we might also find out today.
“It will not be easy for him, giving birth to the likes of Call Me Lord, but I am hopeful he will give a fantastic account of himself.
Ali Stronge’s Blu Cavalier along with Neil King’s stable star Lil Rockerfeller finish the six-strong field.