James Eustace has been busy over the festive season preparing his horses for the New Year ahead. He could have 5 runners over the next 4 days, both on the flat and over jumps. ARIODANTE will be the first runner of 2007 and can hopefully get the year off to a flying start. He ran well over 12 furlongs recently, finishing fourth in a close finish. He races over an extra furlong at Lingfield tomorrow and that should suit him well.
On Thursday WESTER LODGE is due to run over hurdles at Lingfield over 2 miles. He has run over 2 Ĺ miles in his last 2 runs but appeared not to get home last time out on soft ground. Hopefully the drop back in trip will help him but all the recent rain may have made the ground too soft for him. He seems to have taken to hurdling well as he has jumped very well in his 2 runs to date.
RATZIA, a 4 year old filly, makes her debut for the yard on Friday in a 12 furlong maiden at Wolverhampton. She was formerly with Clive Brittain and has shown some ability in 2 previous runs. She has not run over this distance before but it should suit her. It will be interesting to see how she runs on her first run for the yard but she has shown some ability and should be capable of winning a race in the right company.On Saturday CETSHWAYO is returning to the track, distance and company of his win at the end of last season. He runs in a 10 furlong selling race at Lingfield. He has obviously shown he is capable of winning such a contest so letís hope he can do so again on Saturday.
ORCADIAN cam very close to giving the yard a festive winner at Kempton last week. He ran a very gallant race, finishing second beaten ĺ length. He is entered in the Ladbroke Hurdle at Sandown on Saturday. If he runs he should have an excellent chance as the track should suit him well. He seems better on right handed tracks and Sandown seems to suit front runners. He is not a definite starter as James Eustace feels it is quite soon after his last race. He does seem to have come out of his last race extremely well though and may well take his chance if the ground remains as soft as that will really suit him too.
Letís hope one of these runners can kick start the New Year well. The yearlings are coming on well now and taking their first steps on the Heath so there is plenty to look forward too in the forthcoming year.