There are certain trainers taking their horses to the Cheltenham festival that are looking for the ground to be good and one of them is flat trainer Roger Teal who now looks to have a serious chance at the Champion Bumper with Ocean Wind.
The four year old for landed a gamble at the weekend being smashed in all day to finally go off at 7/2 and he bolted up in the Listed bumper at Newbury.
Aidan Coleman gave him a peach of a ride but the most exciting think about the horse was how well he pulled away from the field in the final stages.
Pace is certainly something he has on his side and with that in mind the bookies cut him into 16/1 for the Champion Bumper from a huge 50/1.
With speed his main angle his trainer is obviously looking for the ground to be more like it is during the summer so it will enable him to endure his favourable conditions of good ground.
Ocean Wind has come on the scene from nowhere but when looking at his form has raced three times, winning two and only finishing second once and that run came on soft ground.
For a horse that just cost £9,000 it could be one of the stories of the festival if he was able to win the Grade One Champion Bumper.
(Credit At the Races) His trainer Roger Teal said: “The owners are quite keen to go to Cheltenham, so if he’s in good form we’ll probably go there.
“Liverpool might suit him better – but after winning like he did on Saturday, it would be hard to talk them out of Cheltenham!
"There’s only one Grade One bumper in this country – the owners are very excited, and everyone wants the opportunity to have a runner at Cheltenham.”
It is still up in the air what the long term goal is with this horse, whether he will go over hurdles or drop into a long distance flat horse but at this moment in time bumpers look the way forward.
Teal added: “The fact it is the last race on the Wednesday works in our favour.
“I said to the owners that if we have a dry spring, that will work in our favour.
“He coped with soft ground when he ran at Cheltenham before, but he didn’t show the turn of foot he did on Saturday. That was because it was tacky ground.“He’s still a bit green. He’s learning all the time, so hopefully he’ll come forward again.
“I’d imagine after a break we’ll think about running him on the Flat, once Cheltenham is out of the way.”