Grade Two Premier Novices' Hurdle Guide 2022

Andy Smith | @AndySmithRacing

Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
8
Brian Hughes

Richmond Lake

J: Brian Hughes
T: Donald McCain
N/A
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: 132
Days: 42

First seen in a bumper over in Ireland for Eugene O’Sullivan he ran quite poorly before tackling life in the point to point sphere.

Unable to win between the flags, he moved to Donald McCain’s yard to restart life under rules over here. A clear winner on debut in a maiden hurdle, he went in by 15 lengths after making all the running.

Finishing a close 3rd to North Lodge at Aintree he then scored over 2.5 miles under a penalty by a devastating 27 lengths at lowly odds of 1/7.

Another runner here who was last seen contesting the Supreme trial at Haydock behind Jonbon, he ran with credit to finish 2nd over what was clearly an inadequate trip.

This stiffer course and longer trip should suit and he’s already ran well at the grade.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-3F
22/01/22HAY15.5Sft11-62
26/12/21SED20Sft11-51
04/12/21AIN17Sft10-133
10/11/21BAN16.5Sft11-41
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
7
Sean O'Keeffe

Nells Son

J: Sean O'Keeffe
T: Nicky Richards
N/A
Age: 7
Weight: 11-3
OR: 126
Days: 42

Last seen being unable to live with the impressive Jonbon at the Supreme trial at Haydock, odds of 50/1 didn’t particularly give him much of a chance but he ran well to be 4th and only beaten 8 lengths.

Prior to that he managed to win two of his three bumper starts and got off the mark at the first time of asking over hurdles. The form wasn’t particularly special but he managed to score comfortably enough over 2 miles.

Sent up in trip off the back of that he was narrowly beaten over 2 miles and 5 furlongs when carrying a penalty in a novice race at Ayr. Just being unable to reel in the winner who he was giving weight away too.

He acquitted himself well in a deep grade 2 contest last time and will appreciate this race being over slightly further.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-31
22/01/22HAY15.5Sft11-64
21/12/21AYR21.5Sft11-52
23/10/21KEL16Gd11-41
13/03/21AYR16Hy11-91
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
6
Sean Quinlan

It's Good To Laugh

J: Sean Quinlan
T: Jennie Candlish
N/A
Age: 5
Weight: 11-3
OR: 132
Days: 38

Jennie Candlish’s 5 year old was a smart performer on the flat for Clive Cox and gained a rating of 94 in the other code.

Moving to the jumps in September, he gained race fitness with 3 decent outings on the flat winning twice, before taking to hurdles and getting off the mark at the first time of asking in novice company over 2 miles.

Easily shaking off penalties to win a further 2 races, he then was only narrowly beaten at listed level at Haydock. Looking slightly outpaced.

Last seen moving up in trip, he’s carried a haul of penalties to yet another success.

A stiff 18 furlongs could be right up his alley and he’s carried his smart form on the flat over to the jumps with some style.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/09/22AYR13Gd10-25
02/07/22HAY12Sft8-410
18/06/22AYR13Gd9-69
11/06/22CHS16Gd9-05
06/05/22CHS18.5Gd8-117
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
9
Harry Skelton

Sholokjack

J: Harry Skelton
T: Dan Skelton
N/A
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: 128
Days: 37

Having raced three times, Sholojack has a perfect 3 from 3 record having won a point to point and both of his starts over hurdles.

Winning between the flags over in Ireland, he moved to the Skelton yard in the colours of Sullivan Bloodstock and overcame a mammoth lay off to win a maiden hurdle at Leicester over 2 miles.

Kept at 2 miles for his last run, he managed to defy a penalty to score at Wetherby without having to work too hard at all to skip clear of his rivals.

None of his form looks anything special but he’ll have some improvement in him and scored with ease last time out. He’ll improve again for that outing and has shaped like going a little bit further will be no problem.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
27/01/22WET16GS11-81
15/12/21LEI15.5Sft11-41
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
3
Gavin Sheehan

Datsalrightgino

J: Gavin Sheehan
T: Jamie Snowden
N/A
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: 130
Days: 56

Despite being able to win in his four runs in bumpers for Jamie Snowden, Datsalrightgino bumped into some smart sorts including Gelino Bello and Moriko De Vassy, running well to record three 2nd places.

Taking to hurdles in November of last year he got off the mark at the first time of asking in a novice event over 2 miles at Fontwell before following up under a penalty at Cheltenham, narrowly getting the better of Jpr One.

Moved up in grade when last seeing the Tolworth Hurdle, he failed to cut through the mud in a deeper contest and failed to complete.

Moving up in trip here and facing a sounder surface should suit but he has something to prove in this class.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/04/22CHL20.5Gd11-74
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-3PU
08/01/22SAN16Hy11-7PU
10/12/21CHL17Gd11-41
14/11/21FON17.5Gd10-121
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
2
David Noonan

Bold Endeavour

J: David Noonan
T: L J Morgan
N/A
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: 133
Days: 49

This 6 year old has gained an official rating of 133 off the back of an impressive record of 2 wins from 2 outings over hurdles.

A point to point winner over in Ireland, Bold Endeavour moved over to England and bolted up in his bumper debut at Sedgefield.

Put away until the start of this season, he then got off the mark at the first time of asking over hurdles too with an impressive run to justify favouritism.

Last seen carrying a penalty to success in a novice race, he clearly had improved for his debut outing to run away to a clear cut 12 length success.

He’s improving rapidly and is rated within 4lbs of North Lodge when in receipt of 5lbs.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-33
15/01/22WET19.5Sft11-91
11/11/21SED20Gd11-41
11/05/21SED17Gd11-01
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
5
Chester Williams

Honneur D'Ajonc

J: Chester Williams
T: Mrs Jane Williams
N/A
Age: 5
Weight: 11-3
OR: 129
Days: 30

A highly tried 5 year old, Honneur D’Ajonc started life over hurdles last season as a juvenile but failed to win in any of his three starts over timber as a 4 year old.

This meant he retained his novice status going into this season and after a prep run in France, he won at prohibitive odds in his first run back in England.

His form really picked up as he has matured and gained more experience with 6 runs over hurdles this season in England with him not finishing outside the top 2.

Backing up in novice races under penalties twice and winning a handicap in open company off a mark of 129.

He’s clearly improving at a rate of knotts, he’s gained plenty of experience and has beaten rivals in open company already.

Versatile for trip he could have a big say.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-34
03/02/22WCN15GS11-91
11/01/22EXE18.5Hy10-111
02/12/21WCN15Gd11-32
11/11/21TAU19GF11-11
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
4
Conor O'Farrell

Donny Boy

J: Conor O'Farrell
T: N W Alexander
N/A
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: N/A
Days: 42

An Irish point to point winner, Donny Boy made his transition to running under rules with an emphatic 14 length victory in a bumper at Kelso.

Only having a month between a bumper run and transitioning to hurdles he also managed to win his maiden with the same level of ease.

With that impressive 8.5 length victory in the books he was then moved up in grade to tackle a Grade 2 event at Haydock but he was well found out for quality and finished a hefty 12.5 lengths behind Supreme hopeful Jonbon.

This 6 year old just looks to be lacking the quality to be able to get seriously involved in a graded contest.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-3BD
22/01/22HAY15.5Sft11-66
09/12/21NCS16GS11-41
06/11/21KEL16Sft11-01
Kelso - March 05 2022
Kelso 13:32
1
A P Heskin

North Lodge

J: A P Heskin
T: Alan King
N/A
Age: 5
Weight: 11-8
OR: 137
Days: 35

Trained by Alan King and owned by the McNeill family, North Lodge is boasting an unbeaten record over hurdles with a perfect 2 from 2.

Debuting at Aintree in a strong looking novice hurdle, he just managed to get the better of favourite Bombs Away with subsequent Grade 2 second Richmond Lake back in 3rd.

Strong form for his debut run over hurdles. He just got up late over 17 furlongs.

Last seen stepping up in trip and grade, he won a Grade 2 Ballymore trial at Cheltenham at the end of January.

He carries a penalty for that success here but looks to have the best form in the race and will still be improving having only had 2 runs over timber.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/03/22KEL18Sft11-82
29/01/22CHL20.5Gd11-51
04/12/21AIN17Sft10-121

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