Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Festival Followers: Dan Skelton's quality former flat raider Horseshoe Bay expected to make winning hurdling debut

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Connections are hoping Horseshoe Bay can utilise his impressive flat record, as he makes his first start over hurdles at Worcester this evening (7:05).

The four-year-old has only raced four times, and after two solid efforts in maiden company he won encouragingly by seven lengths at Newmarket.

His seven length romp at HQ, prompted trainer Sir Michel Stoute to test him in Group company, and the son of Arch was installed a second favourite for the Bahrain Trophy over 1m5f.

He ran creditably finishing fourth, by just over four lengths behind winner Mr Singh.

He makes his first start in over two years, but connections are confident he could be a potential star in the national hunt.

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Horseshoe Bay (black and purple colours) finishing fourth at Newmarket 783 days ago.

"Horseshoe Bay makes his long-anticipated return to the track this evening," owners Highclere posted on their Instagram page.

"This is his first run over obstacles after moving to Dan Skelton, and after a long lay-off.

"His schooling at home has been pleasing, and we are looking forward to seeing what he does."

A very ambitious target may be the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, but bookmakers have currently installed him a 4-6 favourite for today's race.

His main competition looks to be Jonjo O'Neill's Mountain Path, who won a good bumper on debut but struggled in a Grade Two event at Aintree last time out.

A better run is also expected from Tom Lacey's Amadoue, who was unplaced at this track earlier this month.

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