Neptune Investments and Albert Bartlett Hurdles: Analysis of main contenders plus ratings







Made his debut in December 2012 at Plumpton; running out an impressive winner of Bumper. Kings Palace went on to finish second to Captain Cutter in a Listed Bumper at Ascot. Sent to Ayr for his hurdle debut last January, he disappointed, falling two out when looking beaten. Returned to action and moved up to three-miles, he made all the running at Fontwell and Cheltenham. Returning to Cheltenham in December for the Albert Bartlett trial, he once again made all jumping well throughout. He clocked an extremely fast time on the second circuit. (Taken from the first hurdle away from the stands to the winning post). Kings Palace conceded 3lb to Masters Hill handing out a nineteen-length defeat. Masters Hill went on to run Deputy Dan to nine-lengths at level weights. His price for the Albert Bartlett has done nothing but strengthen since that run. Goes well fresh and should prove hard to pass.




Following a disastrous chasing debut last November, Royal Boy bounced back to his best over hurdles at Ascot last December. In January 2013, he showed plenty of ability in the Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown Park. Due to the weather, this year’s renewal transferred to Kempton Park. Royal Boy travelled well through the race and making experience count, edging out stablechum Josses Hill on the run-in. The pair were clear of some decent types. Royal Boy stays well, making his Tolworth win all the more impressive. He has a good run at Cheltenham to his name (Close second to Melodic Rendezvous), and has won races on both good and soft ground. Royal Boy would be the first seven-year-old to win since French Holly in 1998. Interestingly, he too won the Tolworth Hurdle prior to Cheltenham. Ascot win enhanced recently when second won a novice hurdle by ten lengths.




Despite the form of his last race appearing less than inspiring, he possesses good ratings. He will need to brush up his jumping as he made mistakes in each of his runs over hurdles. Bumper form ties in closely with Red Sherlock and Kings Palace. Breeding suggests he should stay three-miles with the Albert Bartlett, seemingly his chosen race. Effective on good to soft through to heavy.




Briar Hill ran out a 25/1 winner of the 2013 Festival Bumper. Despite his starting price, there were no flukes about his comfortable success. Sent over hurdles at the start of the season, he has clocked up three wins including the Grade One Navan Hurdle and the Grade Two Slaney Hurdle. Both run over two and a half-miles. The 2009 winner of the latter event won the Neptune Hurdle. The 2012 winner finished third in the same race, while the 2013 winner finished second. Briar Hill can race on or off the pace and looks the sort to dig deep when required. Effective on goodto soft through too soft/heavy and bred to stay three-miles if required.




Irish-Point and Bumper winner, Faugheen has won three hurdles this season. The latest came in a Grade Three at Limerick run on heavy ground over three-miles. The collateral form from his hurdle wins displays just two horses placed, subsequently winning. His breeding has stamina on both sides while he has won on good through to heavy. At the head of the Neptune Hurdle market, he would not look out of place in the Albert Bartlett.




Following nine hurdle runs in France, Un Temps Pout Temps arrived in the UK with a Handicap rating of 159. Un Temps Pout Temps made his debut in this country when a promising second to Zamdy Man over two-miles at Haydock Park. Sent to Ascot and moved up half a mile, he took advantage of Cole Harden’s wayward jumping to cruised home with any amount in hand. Now rated on 148 his experience and seemingly generous handicap mark may sway connections towards his handicap entry. His profile suggests he is best on soft/heavy ground though he did win on good to soft in the French provinces.




Red Sherlock is unbeaten in three Bumpers and three hurdle races. Following two simple tasks earlier this season, his last win came in a Grade Two at Cheltenham. Travelling well through the race he outstayed, (despite flashing his tail under pressure) Rathvinden in the closing stages. Effective at Prestbury Park, all ground comes alike to him. Looks sure to run well in his chosen race and has plenty of improvement to come. One wonders if he is mentally mature enough for what will be the toughest race in his short latest came at Cheltnahm where he came through stromngly The latest coming in a Grade Two at Cheltenham wehre he stayed on well (despite flashing his tail) T




Dual Bumper winner that bolted up in his first hurdle race. Sent to Warwick, he fell three from home in Deputy Dan’s race. At the time of his departure, he was making good progress and looking dangerous. Returning to these shores, he battled on gamely but found Red Sherlock too strong in the closing stages. Effective on good to firm through to heavy, he looks sure to improve further.




Following two runner-up spots in his first two hurdle races, Deputy Dan won with plenty in hand at Chepstow. Sent to Warwick for a Grade Two, he ran out an easy winner following Rathvinden’s departure at the third last. Whilst the outcome was in the balance, Deputy Dan was jumping and travelling strongly at the time. Both his hurdle wins coincided with him facing heavy ground. Effective over two and a half-miles, he should stay further in time. Handles sharp and galloping, flat and undulating tracks.