Philip Kirby Racing

Racehorse Trainer based at Richmond, North Yorkshire

NH Preview Part 2

Part 2 – Our Winter Team continued.. (in no particular order)

Also further photos added this evening

Courtown Oscar at home with Julie

At 8 years old, Courtown Oscar should just be coming to his peak as a staying chaser, and the one regret from last season is that he failed to make the cut for the Eider CHase by just one horse – he was in cracking good form at the time as well. This Oscar gelding is rated 130 over hurdles and 125 over fences, and if the ground comes up soft again for The Eider, its a race that should suit him perfectly if his rating allows him a run. We have learned a lot about him over the last few years – he can go left or right handed but he likes to be up the front and dominating his races with his trademark bold jumping and the further the trip the better. He has won a total of 6 races so far, and while the handicapper seems to have him about right (he was 4th in a competitive 3m 6f handicap chase at The Punchestown Festival) he is still open to further improvement off a light weight in an extreme stamina test. Expect to see him this side of Christmas round the likes of Carlisle and Haydock – but in February all roads will be leading to Newcastle. We would like to think there is a really BIG day waiting for this magnificent looking chaser.

Racing Post comment after his Excellent Punchestown 4th: Courtown Oscar also ran a stormer. Up there all the way, he disputed briefly before the straight but couldn’t raise his game from there. He is probably at his very best on softer ground.

Little Bruce – small but perfectly proportioned

From a big horse to one of the smallest in our yard – but ‘Little Bruce’ ( a full brother to a previous double winner for us, Bruce Almighty) – went from strength to strength last season, winning 3 of his last 4 races, and creeping up to a handicap mark of 116 with which to start 2017/18 over hurdles.  Clearly he is from a very good family – his half

Little Bruce winning at Wetherby

sister is none other than Feathard Lady, the unbaten top class Irish mare, a multiple Grade 1 winner. When Feathard Lady was put to Yeats (the sire of Little Bruce) she bred the high class ‘Augusta Kate’ – and Little Bruce resembles her very closely. Yeats is a real stamina influence, and now that Little Bruce is coming 6, he will step up to 3 miles this season where we feel his strength really lies. Although small in stature, he is the perfect model of a racehorse, and is also one of the best work horses at home, showing plenty of speed on the gallops.  With a new small Partnership of Owners to start the season, we wish them the best of luck with their smart staying hurdler and they may be heading first to Wetherby on October 18th.


‘Suggestion’ is also owned  by a small Partnership –  known as Redcap Racing,  they enjoyed their first success with the grey at Wetherby on March 31st before he was turned out for the summer. He is a well bred flat horse by Dansili with the size and physique of a jumper, bought by Phil and Adam at the Tatts summer sale as an unraced and unfurnished 3 year old. Given plenty of time to mature,  after taking a bumper first time out at Southwell, he has had a nice introduction to hurdling, winning his first race off a mark of 99 with Adam, and starts his new season 4lb higher. He is still eligible for novice handicaps and we will see him reappear in mid October. We expect him to be progressive this year, and hope he can become a talented hurdler – his schooling has certainly been more assured this Autumn according to Adam, and he featured on a recent video jumping well upsides Nautical Nitwit.

Suggestion wins tidily at Wetherby


From one grey to another – the imposing 6 year old  ‘Baracalu’ by the French stallion Califet – he joined us over the summer and is enjoying his work at Green Oaks under regular riders Tommy or Jenni.  He had some runs in Point to Points before bumpers, and after a 3rd at Carlisle he was a wide margin winner at Hexham in March. Midfield in the Class 3 Bumper at Ayr at the Grand National meeting, he probably found the ground quick enough that day for a big chasing type, and soft ground NH novice hurdles will be on his agenda. He is an exciting addition to our Winter team.

Racing Post comment after his Hexham win:

BARACALU was back from a 359-day layoff and pulled his way into a clear early lead. Despite that he was given way too much leeway by his main rivals, who sat in rear, and was never going to be caught off the home turn. It was some effort considering the absence and he’s reportedly held in pretty high regard.

Phil has been busy at the sales this year – and ‘Allmyown’ was another  Goffs UK May sales purchase for

Phil at the sales with purchase, Allmyown

Owners John Birtles & Bill Allan. Reportedly only broken in as a 5 year old, this big quality 6 year old by Mr Combustible has had just 2 starts in Points – 4th on debut and winning his 17 runner maiden in March of this year by 2 1/2 lengths. It was good to see the well backed JP horse ‘Blue Templar’ who was 3rd behind him that day – then go on  and finish 3rd at Punchestown in a banks race, and looked a likely winner there again 2 days later when slipping up on a bend when disputing for the lead 2 out. This has franked the point form nicely, and we couldn’t be more pleased with AllmyOwn in everything he has done so far. He is a big, classy looking gelding with so much scope – and although his future definately lies over fences he will be going novice hurdling to begin with.

The impressive looking 6 year old, Allmyown

From novices to an established 6 year old, the tall, keen going ‘Sakhee’s City’ who is very talented but

Sakhee’s City

doesn’t have the win ratio we would like with 1 win, 7 seconds and 3 thirds. He travels very well through  a race and posses so much natural ability, we hope that novice chasing this winter will see him to his best advantage. The schooling has all gone to plan  so far and he has a likely first outing at the next Sedgefield meeting on October 3rd. He has an official rating of 125 over hurdles, and has run some very good races – we just need to convince him that winning is the way forward. He rarely runs a bad race however, and he is looking as well as ever at home for his Autumn debut.

Our final two on the Preview today both came from the Pointing field – the 4 year old chestnut gelding  ‘Askmemore’ by Ask and the 5 year old Mahler filly, ‘Gonn Away’ , the former bought from Goffs in May and the filly from a ’boutique’ pointing sale at Aintree. Askmemore is currently owned by us, and the dream is of course that he wins a bumper or novice hurdle and then he will be heading back to Goffs or finding an Owner to remain on the yard! He is a tidy looking individual who will be making his stable debut in October, and we’re hoping he can go on and prove to be capable of winning but time will tell.  ‘Gonn Away’ is out of a Supreme Leader mare, and she had no luck in points – falling on her first run, brought down on her second when going well, and making a bad mistake at the last when looking a likely winner of her third start, but remaining on her feet to keep 2nd place at Ballindenisk – her next date beeing the Aintree  sales ring when Phil took a chance on her at sensible money. She has subsequently found new Owners, and we are looking forward to running this mare in bumpers and novice hurdles this winter as she looks a handy staying type with a good attitude at home. She is another who will make her seasonal debut sometime in October – our Winter team is well forward.

Tomorrow ….

We will be looking at some dark horses along with some established winners for us:

Nautical Nitwit

Eastview Boy

Shine Baby Shine

Macenzie’s Friend


Nicely Indeed

Show Promise

True Ballew




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