It is so satisfying when a horse returns to form and Well Above Par certainly did today at Kelso with an all the way victory in the feature handicap chase. Loving the heavy ground he jumped with a refound confidence to give the Eagle Partnership a valuable win. Ginny, Sandy, Euan, Roger, and Anne were present, just Ian could not make it this time. With time Well Above could improve again and we will look for more of the same for him.
Ain't My Fault did not really like the heavy going but made a bold bid in the two mile handicap chase, just to be collared near the line. He has improved his jumping since last spring and should be winning soon. In the same race, Effet Special was outpaced but jumped with more assuredness and we will try him on the better ground next time.
Emirat De Cantana is another who would prefer good to soft, but he looked to get his confidence back after a heavy fall last time, coming fourth in the three mile novice handicap chase. Still just a five year old he has time on his side.
Down at Aintree, we were delighted with Bialco, bravely coming fourth in the Pertemps qualifier over three miles, a trip that can stretch him on soft ground. He is now qualified for the Cheltenham Festival.
Spark Of Madness travelled nicely in the juvenile bumper but the two miles and soft ground tested him and Tom was not hard on him when his chance had gone. A few months to strengthen will benefit him and the experience of Aintree will be built on next time.