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Strath can still Burn bright

1 Sep 2016

Oisin Murphy

Oisin has been in great form, can he continue it with Strath Burn? Copyright: racingfotos.com

It’s been quite the week for me so far since I last spoke to you. I’ve ridden seven winners since Monday and I’m currently on my way to Chelmsford to try and keep my name in the paper!

Poet’s Vanity won for me earlier this afternoon and she won by a long way. She’d been doing everything right at home and has a lovely pedigree – she’s a half-sister to Lesson In Humility – and I know the family quite well. She’s a sizeable filly and I hope she has a great future.

Looking ahead to Saturday, however, and the big race of the day is the 32Red Sprint Cup at Haydock where I’ll be partnering Strath Burn. His work at the start of the year was very good but then he lost his way before his first run. He’s taken time to come together and we’re not certain that he’s 100% yet, but Robert [Cowell] is happy with him. He still retains all of his ability, will be back over six furlongs and has the cheekpieces back on. We’re hoping for a little bit of an ease in the ground, though.

Had Strath Burn not have been in the race then I could well have been riding Dancing Star for Andrew Balding. It’s terrible for David Probert to not be riding as she’s in super order. She only does what she has to do at home but they’re very happy and it’s all systems go for her. Obviously if I can’t win on Strath Burn then I’d be pleased to see Dancing Star win it for Andrew.

I want a bit of ease in the ground for all of my rides on Saturday – not just Strath Burn. I’ve got another five rides on the day and they all want the ground on the easier side of good.

First up is Drochaid who is up against two Frankel colts in Cunco and Frankuus. Our lad is tough and he is improving all the time. A slight ease would be good as although he handles quick ground, he is a big horse and he’d have to be in with an each way chance.

The ground is more key for Here Comes When, though. It is important that it is the easier side of good and he has some great form in the book if you go back along his races. I won on him in the past at Chester and I know him really well, in fact, I know him like the back of my hand!

Montaly is another that has been around for a few years. He’s a Yeats horse and he’s a proper stayer. We always thought he would make a good handicapper – if not something a little more – and this looks ideal for him. He is a big galloper and I’m looking forward to him.

As a prelude to the big race, I ride Dungannon who I’ve won on a few times in the past. He’s a true five furlong horse but he’s another who will need an ease in the ground to be at his absolute best.

I then end the day on The Graduate. He got away with winning on Good to Firm last time because of the track but he’s another who would be better if the ground eased. He’s a proper stayer and is improving all the time. His form is a little in and out but if it goes his way and he gets in to a nice rhythm then he’s a lovely horse for us going forward.

Finally, there hasn’t been much of an update on South Seas of late and the decision on where to go next rests with connections, but I think the Dewhurst may be favoured. We obviously hope he improves as time goes on, but I think we’ll get this year out of the way first and give him the winter to strengthen up.

Now, I’m off to do a little rain dance!

One to watch

Naval Warfare

I was second on this lad last time out at Ffos Las but he is improving with every run. He’s likely to take his chance at Leicester next Tuesday.