25 November 2022

Jet Powered too strong for Newbury rivals

25 November 2022

Jet Powered followed in the hoofprints of some illustrious stablemates by making a sparkling debut under Rules in the Coral Bet Bundles ‘National Hunt’ Maiden Hurdle at Newbury.

A 350,000 guineas purchase after winning an Irish point-to-point, the Jet Away gelding was the 8-13 favourite provide Nicky Henderson with a sixth victory in the last nine runnings of this race, with dual Champion Hurdle hero Buveur D’Air (2015) and Jonbon (2021) among his previous victors.

The five-year-old travelled strongly and jumped accurately throughout in the hands of Nico de Boinville and passed the post with 11 lengths in hand over Dan Skelton’s Ittack Blue, another an expensive recruit at 310,000 guineas after also winning in the point-to-point sphere.

Paddy Power cut Jet Powered to 6-1 from 12-1 for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham, while Coral offer slightly more generous odds of 8-1 – but Henderson is not getting carried away just yet.

“He’s not a horse you’d do an awful lot with at home because he’s quite an active sort of person and a bit on it at times,” the Seven Barrows handler told Racing TV.

“He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do and jumps well and you’d have to be very pleased.

“This is a nice race to start in and there’s a lot to look forward to. He’s a chaser in the making and will get a bit further, so the future is in front of him.

“I think we’ll stay at two miles and tinker along quietly – there’s no rush. There’s a long way to go before he’s the finished article.”

Frere D’Armes made it two from two over fences for the Skelton team in the Coral Racing Club Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase.

A 4-1 shot off the back of victory at Kempton earlier in the month, the five-year-old had to knuckle down from the final fence to see off the gallant Aucunrisque by two and a quarter lengths.

Frere D’Armes returned to the winner’s enclosure with what appeared a nasty cut, but his trainer is hopeful it is not too serious.

Skelton said: “He has a fabulous attitude and jumping is obviously his game. He went round Kempton and was quite impressive. It was much better ground today, but that didn’t really worry us as he’s an accurate mover and wouldn’t be a really soft ground horse I don’t think.

“I’m not in a massive rush with him, to be honest. He’s a horse with an honest attitude and I don’t think we want to ask him too many big questions and find out what he can’t do.

“The cut will force us into giving him a bit of time and I don’t think that will be a bad thing – even if he didn’t run until February I wouldn’t be offended.

“We’ll see how the novices end up going, but he’s effective round Kempton and if he went the right way, a race like the Pendil Novices’ Chase would suit him.”

Stay Away Fay provided Paul Nicholls with a third successive victory in the Coral Get Closer To The Action Novices’ Hurdle.

Connections went to £305,000 to secure his services last December – and while he looked booked for minor honours halfway up the straight with Henderson’s Russian Ruler going great guns in front, the latter tired on the run-in and Stay Away Fay ultimately won comfortably by five lengths.

Heezer Geezer came through to beat a tired Russian Ruler to the runner-up spot.

“It was his first time on the track and he’s still a green horse. He’s got plenty to learn, but it was good to see him gallop on strongly like that,” said Nicholls.

“Harry Cobden and Harry Skelton both felt like that was a deep race to ride in. They went a right good gallop and we outstayed them, but I think there’s a lot to come from him yet.”

Both Bravemansgame and Stage Star landed this race before returning to the track to claim Grade One honours in the Challow Hurdle the following month but Stay Away Fay may not follow suit, with Nicholls viewing that race as a more suitable target for his impressive Cheltenham winner Hermes Allen.

He added: “He’s very laid back at home. Him and Hermes Allen are identical as they don’t excite you and don’t show you a lot so you don’t know what you’ve got until you run, but some of the best horses I’ve trained were like that.

“I think Hermes Allen is that bit more experienced and he’s had a fortnight since he ran at Cheltenham.

“This lad had a hard race today and I wouldn’t necessarily want to run too quick. I haven’t totally ruled the Challow out, but it would be daft running them against each other.”

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