The Great Northern Hurdle is the next major assignment for Grand National winner Jackfrost.
The Schweppes Great Northern Hurdle at Te Rapa on September 9 is a likely assignment for Grand National Hurdle winner Jackfrost.
The Brian and Shane Anderton-trained grey lived up to the potential he showed last winter when he scored an easy win in Wednesday’s Riccarton feature, and now connections are giving serious consideration to a trip north.
“We’ve always rated him and it was good to see him win a big one,” said Shane Anderton. “He’s come through the race in good shape so it’s logical to look at the Great Northern next.
“It’s still a month away and we’ve got the time to take him home and then work out a programme, but it’s likely that if we do decide to go north he’ll have a run on the flat beforehand to keep him up to the mark.”
Meanwhile, emerging steeplechase star Des De Jeu is likely to have just one further start before being turned out for the year.
The Mark Oulaghan-trained six-year-old followed his headline grabbing win at Awapuni in June, when rider Aaron Kuru staged a remarkable recovery, with an impressive restricted grade win over the Riccarton country on Wednesday.
This performance was more workmanlike as Kuru settled Des De Jeu in behind the pace before bringing him through to challenge and win with something in reserve.
“No heroics this time, just a good win when everything went to plan,” Oulaghan summed up. “Aaron made all the right moves on him and the horse did the rest.
“We won’t be asking him for too much more, one more run probably at either Wanganui or Te Aroha. He can go out after that and we’ll bring him back for something more ambitious next year.”
Oulaghan reports that his dual Grand National Steeplechase winner Upper Cut is back at his Awapuni stable facing likely retirement following his breakdown in last Saturday’s Koral Steeplechase.
“The leg’s still wrapped up, so we’ll keep him confined for a month or so and then make a firm decision. It looks like he’s finished, but I know someone who’s happy to give him a home.
“He’s an easy horse to ride, his manners are good, so he’ll have a future away from the track. That’s always good to know.”