Sean Bowen Chepstow Preview: He’s definitely one of the classier horses in the field
13:35 Chepstow – Thomas Darby
He’s obviously been a very good horse in the past, and he showed he still retains plenty of that ability when winning in a small field at Ayr last season. He then struggled in the Grade 1 at Aintree when nothing really went right for him, but its very difficult to place a horse like that when they have such a high rating but are probably just short of top class.
He’s now eligible for these veterans’ races which is great as it gives a horse like him a bit of a chance, even off such a high mark. He’s definitely one of the classier horses in the field, so even though he has plenty of weight, he’s a good jumper and I’d be hoping he can go very close.
He has gone well fresh in the past, but as they get older I just think these horses find things tougher in general, so that’s where these veterans’ races come in really handy. You often see horses win these sorts of races, then when they go back into a normal handicap they really struggle, so it’s just great to have races for horses like Thomas Darby who probably just aren’t quite as good as they once were.
14:10 Chepstow – Resplendent Grey
Even though he has a bit to find on ratings, I think he has plenty more to come this horse, so I’m looking forward to getting back on him. His form looks pretty solid, and even though he was a bit green when he won his maiden hurdle at Wetherby, I felt he was much more streetwise at Perth last time, so I think he’ll improve again.
He’s just improving a little bit with every run, so I think he can definitely prove he’s better than a mark of 120, and although this will be his toughest task to date, I’d be hopeful he could run into a place at the very least.
I think whatever happens here he’s a nice horse for the future, and I think the step up in trip will definitely suit him as all he does is stay, so I’d say he’ll make a lovely staying chaser in time.
Welsh Jump Jockey’s Derby
I’m also really looking forward to riding in Welsh Jump Jockey’s Derby which is a charity race to raise valuable funds for the Welsh children’s cancer charity Latch. The news of Christian Williams’ daughter Betsy’s diagnosis really hit the entire racing community hard, and it’s fantastic that so many people have come together to support what is a wonderful cause.
I think the Just Giving page is closing on £6,000 worth of donations which is fantastic to see, and hopefully we’ll raise plenty of money for a charity that is close to so many people’s hearts in Wales.
I ride a horse called Gavin who dad trains, and even though it’s a charity race and we are all good mates, I just know there’ll be plenty of banter flying round on the way to the start. We are all very competitive, so I know all the lads will be desperate to win, but I’ll be hoping to get Gavin’s head in front, and if I do, then the lads know they’ll never hear the end of it!
Sean Bowen, Coral Racing Ambassador