Trueshan looking great, but how we need that rain to fall again
Trueshan looked bigger and stronger when he did a routine canter up the all-weather at Barbury yesterday, but Alan has always stressed that the horse’s programme will again be determined by the weather and the abnormally dry April is playing havoc with plans leading up to the Ascot Gold Cup.
York could well get three or four millimetres of rain on Wednesday, but after that the forecast for the Knavesmire looks fairly dry, so, while the Yorkshire Cup, the favoured next target for our stable-star, is not until Friday week, the omens in the skies above do not look favourable for him being in the line-up.
Trueshan, successful on his seasonal debut in the Listed Further Flight Stakes at Nottingham, is ante-post favourite for next week’s G2 race over a mile and three-quarters.
But, though Alan has the Henry 11 Stakes at Sandown on May 27 as plan B for last year’s Goodwood Cup and Champion Long Distance Cup hero, Alan would doubtless prefer five weeks between the horse’s prep-race and the Ascot Gold Cup rather than the three which he would get should his dress-rehearsal be on the Esher slopes.
Alan said:”I just cannot see much rain on the horizon and got precious little encouragement watching Country File on TV. Naturally, I would love to get another run into Trueshan before Ascot, but at least we were able to get him started earlier this season at Nottingham, so we will have to be patient and just wait on the weather.
“Trueshan is a lot stronger this year. He was turned out for two months during the winter and Hollie (Doyle) also felt that he had improved again since Champions Day when she rode him at Nottingham.”
Lack of rain last year meant that Trueshan missed not only the Gold Cup at Ascot, but also the Lonsdale at York and the Doncaster Cup. The heavens barely opened at all during April, so surely it must rain again since. Or maybe not …….
Alan certainly won’t be taking any chances with Trueshan. He added:”I sent seven horses up to Haydock for their valuable Challenger series over Easter, and five came back wrong. It is simply not good enough, and Haydock need to get their house in order.”