8/10/2017: Castletown-Geoghegan (yield-soft)

4yo maiden:

The 2017/18 point-to-point season got off to a somewhat belated start this year and Wexford’s Colin Bowe, champion handler for the past three seasons, wasted no time in getting off the mark in the 4yo maiden with:

Napoleon Blue (Colin Bowe) by Beat Hollow 23- (R90)

He cost Bowe €18,000 as a 3yo in Goffs but was unsold last June following his placed efforts in two maidens earlier this year. Presumably, the decision to buy him back in has been rewarded with this victory although it is unclear as yet where his new home may be.

Pedigree: he is the eighth foal out of a 1992 unraced Le Bavard mare whose only winning sibling was Arthur Moore’s Torrent Bay, a useful hurdler and chaser over 2-2.5 miles in the early 90’s. Napoleon Blue’s standout pedigree listing is his half-brother Ninetieth Minute who won the 2009 Coral Cup (2m5f) at Cheltenham for Tom Taaffe.  Two other half-brothers have scored.

His sire is very interesting and could easily be missed as a potential star. Beat Hollow stood in Ireland for the first time in 2012 so these four-year-olds represent his first true National Hunt crop. A relative disappointment when standing in Banstead Manor as a flat stallion  his appeal as a NH sire is clear from a 2009 foal who grew up to be Wicklow Brave. From just 6 runners in Irish point-to-points from his 2013 crop he has had 3 winners and two placed runners so, obviously, his runners in this sphere command the greatest respect. His flag bearers prior to Napoleon Blue have been Some Man (ran twice for Paul Nicholls) and Stay Humble who has yet to reappear.

To date the collateral form of the three races Napoleon Blue has contested do not set the pulse racing and winners of this particular maiden in the past – typified by the likes of Jack Steel – have tended to be future winners in modest handicaps and perhaps one should not have too many ambitious hopes for Napoleon Blue. I think my personal lesson from this research is the potential of future Beat Hollow recruits to pointing.  Pat Doyle’s Southern Nights, recently second in a Dromohane maiden, may be one such nominee. It is very early days for the sires track runners from his first crop so I shall be watching with interest.

5yo maiden:

In recent seasons the older maiden has been more fruitful in terms of track winners with Baku Bay, Gowanauthat, Shanroe Street and De Dollar Man (looks a promising handicap chaser) all going on the win under Rules since 2013 – a 100% record in four years.

Flash The Steel (Jonathan Fogarty) by Craigsteel 4- (R88)

was the 2017 winner and he has already joined Dan Skelton (who bought him privately) but has not yet raced under Rules. Craigsteel is a reliable enough sire but expect Flash The Steel to be a capable handicapper at best. He is now with Dan Skelton and ran a fine race to finish second in a bumper on his first start before Christmas.

If you would like to get in touch to discuss any aspects of the bloodstock and racing industry please contact me at: dskelly@davidskelly.ie

If you would like some advice in relation to your business ventures I would be pleased to call to your premises for an initial meeting which is provided on a complimentary basis.

If you would like to get in touch to discuss any aspects of the bloodstock and racing industry please contact me at: dskelly@davidskelly.ie

Alternatively, if you would like some advice in relation to your business ventures I would be pleased to call to your premises for an initial meeting which is provided on a complimentary basis.

'The Accountant who knows his Assert from his Elbio'