Grosvenorsport.com ambassador and leading National Hunt jockey Harry Skelton talks about his big win at the weekend at Chepstow and runs through his midweek rides at Wetherby.
We were very happy with Flash The Steel in the Silver Trophy at Chepstow on Saturday. They went a really strong gallop up front and he travelled well through the race. I went quite wide to find some fresher ground and probably hit the front a little bit soon, but a lot of them had done their running by then.
He was always doing enough to the line and I think we’ve got a nice progressive horse to look forward to this season. At the moment two and a half miles is perfect, but in the spring on better ground we could step him up to three. This was his main early-season target and we’ll look at another race somewhere in a month or so.
Ardlethen did well to win the novice chase on Friday, beating Lisnagar Oscar. He progressed all last season and it was just one race too many for him at Aintree in April. He’s a very nice staying chaser in the making.
We were pleased with Proschema in the novice hurdle as well, he ran a nice race. He was quite novicey in the jumping department and I’m sure he’ll improve plenty with some better ground. He’s definitely one to keep on the right side of.
Excited about Beakstown
We have some nice horses going up to Wetherby on Wednesday where Beakstown makes his debut over fences in the novice chase (2.55pm).
Beakstown was one of our leading novice hurdlers last season but disappointed in the Ballymore. He was just a big baby around Cheltenham that day and I’d put a line through that run.
We’re very happy with him, although it looks a warm novice chase with Sam Spinner in there. We’re excited to get him started and even though three miles will be his bag in the future, this 2m3½f is a perfect starting point.
We’ll get Wednesday out of the way before we make any plans. We’ve got a really nice bunch of young horses and he’s high up on the list of the novice chasers.
West Cork goes for the novice hurdle (3.30pm). He won a point-to-point last November and is a really likeable type by Midnight Legend. He won that point-to-point well and only just does enough at home.
He looks to have a good attitude and we’re looking forward to getting him started.
Very difficult to win jockeys’ title this season
Realistically it’s going to be very difficult to win the jockeys’ championship this season. We didn’t have as many summer horses as last year, but the winter horses definitely look stronger.
I always say that as a jockey you have to take it day-by-day. You need to keep sound and fit, and anything can happen. It’s obviously something I would love to achieve at some point in my career.