On Fire, at Kelso
WINNER 106 OF 2022: GENEVER DRAGON, trained by Donald McCain and ridden by Brian Hughes: 'The John Carr Grandstand Handicap Hurdle' over 2m 2f at Kelso.
He was favourite for this race, perhaps something to do with being 2nd by a short head at Perth in July and then taking 3rd last time out at Bangor, even though he lost a front shoe.
After an aborted start, they lined up again and Brian had him to the fore. Disputing the lead for much of the race, on the inner, he jumped well until the 3rd from home, which he got a bit close to and jumped awkwardly.
Being challenged, he didn't jump the second last quite well enough either, which opened the door for challengers and he was headed approaching the last. A good jump regained momentum and he led again in the run-in, keeping on, to win by a neck.
Watch the full race replay here: https://www.racingtv.com/videos/watch/horse_racing_replays/410205-john-carr-grandstand-handicap-hurdle-5
Timeform rated it as a 99+ performance, saying: "Was all out to win his first race since his hurdling debut; made running, joined circuit out, went on after 3 out, not fluent 2 out, tackled soon after, edged ahead again run-in, dug deep under pressure.”
Brian had a double on the day and said in his Racing TV interview: "He always works well at home and has been consistent on the flat and over jumps. It's a shame that he lost a shoe early on in the race last time out, but he likes this ground and it's good for him to win again like he did today.”
See the official photo gallery, here: https://www.grossick.co.uk/p/80532khg/C385397925/x4-genever-dragon
Syndicate manager Tom says: "I am so made up for the horse and his owners, that he got his head in front yesterday. He has been running well and showed a determined and willing attitude in the finish, under a super ride from Brian. We will look for a next target for him. Well done to Donald and his team, Brian and his syndicate!”
We have added some shares in GENEVER DRAGON! You can buy into his syndicate and see his details here.