Horses can come to life for many different reasons. Sometimes it’s just a time of year when they seem to thrive, when their form steps up to another level. This can be even more evident with fillies and mares. Company Asset is a nice filly but when the ground gets testing around the back end of the season she is a very good filly. Having improved through the ranks last season she took her form to another level again when storming home to take the 1m2f Listed Marathonbet Sportsbook British EBF Gillies Fillies Stakes.
Company Asset has always shown a good level of form throughout her career but it was last season where she really took off. Having raced over 7f & 1m predominantly it was a stamina test that really helped her improve. Two wins at Hamilton with a increases in trip each time saw her rise up the handicap. This was backed up by a couple of good efforts but it was Haydock over 1m2f in heavy, gruelling conditions that saw her come alive. Six lengths on the bridle propelled Company Asset towards the three figure mark.
Having proven herself in handicap company there was no option but to go for pattern company. Finishing second in a French listed race gave her the vital black type and meant that this season would be spent in search of even more. Unfortunately the key to her improvement was finding out that ease in the ground was what she loved. Three efforts showed that Asset was certainly up to the level but quick ground was definitely not in favour. Connections decided that patience was key and to wait for the ideal race with ground that she would relish.
With the glorious summer weather Asset ended up with a 2 1/2 month wait between runs but eventually the rain came. She ran very well at York’s final meeting, just showing the effects of a break and needing the run. With that under her belt the attention turned immediately to her next run and Doncaster looked ideal, trip, conditions and time between races should all be in favour.
It was a typical fillies listed race at this time of year, large field and very competitive. The ground had come and Asset was in great nick heading into the contest. Kevin Stott was reunited with the filly who he had last ridden to success. The strength of the race was shown in her odds of 16/1 but there was very little separating the entire field.
Drawn 14 of 14 can be the death draw but thankfully Asset is a filly who enjoys to be held up. Kevin wanted to settle early doors and take his time but he got a little more than he bargained for. Slowly away, Asset gave the field a few lengths start. It did allow the pair to track right over to the rail and shorten her trip round but Kevin just needed to nudge her along to latch on to the back of the field. The early pace was fair as the fancied runners went forward to fight out for the lead. It was Queen Of Time who took them along through the early stages.
Straiht into a bend the field rounded that and headed down the back straight. Asset settled nicely at the rear of the field but she was given away a good 15 lengths to the leader. With the ground kicking up quite a lot the field shunned the rail to race just off it and find some better ground. Now settled into their positions the pace calmed to nice and even gallop, giving all the runners a chance.
Little would change through the first half of the race and Queen Of Time would continue to set the fractions in front. The field was well bunched up racing down the home straight and entering the home bend all were going well. Doncaster has a long straight that gives horses plenty of time to find their feet and lay down their challenge. This meant that there was little movement coming around the bend as the jockeys bided their time. Kevin was still happy to just wait and make up ground closer to the finish.
Turning for home they entered the final 1/2 mile and now the pace just increased. From the front Queen Of Time started to wind it up, only steadily but it was the first move made. Kevin loosened the reins on Asset and she responded by lengthening and moving up a couple of places. With the testing conditions the finish would be a real battle and the jockeys were wary of getting racing too far out. Passing the 3f the order was very much the same with Queen Of Time still heading the pack but now the leader had to try and kick clear of the field. The race warmed up but the leader had failed to gain any advantage.
Between the 3f and 2f poles the runners started to make their moves, getting into a position to lay down their challenges. Company Asset was picking off rivals one by one and Kevin decided to stick to the far side as they raced towards the centre. He had a lovely run up the inner with clear daylight if he had the horse underneath him. The race was now heating up and as they headed to final couple of furlongs the leader started to look very vunerable.
Company Asset was closing towards the lead with ease and travelled powerfully. Having moved through the field she was now just a few lengths from the front. With Queen Of Time now starting to struggle to maintain the lead there was finishers from all around. The favourite Bona Fide was now poised to take over down the inner. This filly gave Asset a lovely toe into the contest and with 1 1/2f to run Kevin now got lower in the saddle to throw down his full challenge. Asset responded by quickening up and looked a massive threat, going the best at this stage.
Into the final furllong there was still plenty of chances. Bona Fide held the lead but it was Asset who was finishing strongest. Although going the best it suddenly looked as though the better ground may be towards the centre of the track. As they all swarmed on the leader Company Asset found another gear. There was 5 across the track separated by only a length but it was Asset who took the opportunity. Finding again she passed the favourite and took the lead. Nothing could match her finish and Company Asset just drew further and further clear. Pushed out to the line she galloped all the way through and stride out an impressive 2 1/2 length winner.
It was an impressive win for Company Asset and very important, earning her winner’s black type. She is a different horse on this type of ground and very little can match her turn of foot in testing conditions. Hambleton Racing have had some nice fillies in their time and Asset has giving them so many good days out. She is in great form so could well head to France for another listed event in just 6 days time. Company Asset has really thrived and it would be great to grab some more black type. On this form it will be very hard to see otherwise.