I am looking forward to the 2 40 at Auteuil today as much as the World Cup at Meydan or the Lincoln at Doncaster. You see the horse that should have fought out the finish of the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham was marked absent along with his stablemate Annie Power. That horse of course is the hitherto unbeaten Un De Sceaux. Of course we will never know what would have happened but a lot of what this site predicted beforehand DID take place so my belief is he would have finished ahead of Jezki but whether he would have beaten the desperately unlucky The New One or the misplaced Annie Power is another matter. I try to play that race over and over in my mind if they had all met and I still cannot figure that hypothetical scenario out. Of course I am a sad person dwelling on such a fruitless cause.

The saddest part of the whole Champion Hurdle debacle for one of the best NH trainers in living memory was the ” will they, won’t they run ” saga. To my mind he was badly advised and it is best to leave it at that but the reason for not running Un De Sceaux was even more perplexing. The yard reasoned that the race was coming ”too soon” in his career and the travelling to the meeting and hurly burley nature of the race itself might ”blow his mind”. I disagreed with that line of thinking as evidenced on this site here but of course you go along with it but imagined that they would wait for Punchestown instead to help with his education on to the biggest stage. Ah, no. Let’s bring him double the distance to France, up him in trip by half a mile further than he has ever run before and face him with obstacles that he has never raced over to this point. Now, if I wanted to ”blow” a horse’s mind ………………..

Un De Sceaux is a machine. He has never been tested yet alone see another rival in his seven career races to date. He is an explosive a horse as you could wish to see . He runs speed figures that are off the Mordin, Richter or any other scale you can lay your hands on. The reason for these massive numbers is that he knows only one way to race, flat out and Jesus can he go. The problem with a horse like Un De Sceaux is that he puts it all in and some more. He is a Lionel Messi , Roy Keane type character rather than a Ronaldo or any other of those sunshine brigade who do it when they feel like it. This wholehearted effort has it’s downside and can lead to a shortened career as the stress that a racehorse puts itself under at this level is immense. The possibility of EIPH [bleeding] is increased and the pressure on the front tendons is also an additional risk.

Un De Sceaux could hardly have picked two tougher opponents than if he tried. Gemix and Lord Prestige lay in wait. These are two of the best in France . They will gift him a 20 lengths lead no problem but one of those two will run their race so Willie’s horse will have to be spot on. It is very rare indeed for any horse to take to these strange French hurdles first time out. He will have been schooled over them when he was a baby over there before his purchase to Ireland and indeed will have been jumped over those horrible easyfix hurdles that have been introduced here but racing over them first time is a completely different matter and a horse will always need his first experience jumping these at speed.

I love Un De Sceaux and believe him to be top class. He will have to be out of the ordinary to win here in circumstances that should prove beyond him but I am going to stick my neck out after all the above and say that the bookmakers are wrong to be drifting him. He has been on the slide since the market opened and is now available at 3/1 on RaceBets. 1 pt win at 3/1 UN DE SCEAUX. Come on my son !!!


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