Horses who run in lower grade races such as claimers and sellers tend to have a few kinks in them. It can be that injury has led to a decline, age has caught up with them, ability or sometimes it can be just that they overthink the game too much. Tagur certainly falls into the latter, a horse who is well capable of better but consistency being his downfall. With everything in his favour he decided that he was on a going day when cruising to victory in the 1m Watch More With RacingUK Extra Selling Stakes At Redcar.
Having won or been placed in about half of his career starts, Tagur has shown ability and should really be racing off higher than his mark. Since getting his handicap mark he has always be flitting in and around the mid 60’s. Just when he looked like improving to a higher grade, Tagur’s consistency would let him down. This year has been a prime example. Two good efforts were followed by a poor run, before Tagur went to win two on the bounce. Looking like he was set to thrive back on the turf he went on a bit of a disaapointing run. Bouncing back to form in August on the AW that run was then followed by a weaker effort at Ayr in September.
Kevin decided to freshen the chestnut up and it really did help. Tagur was bouncing at home and really worked well a week before he lined up at Redcar. Dropping into selling class gave connections plenty of confidence that they had the best horse, if Tagur would put his best foot forward.
Recent weather meant the ground had gone soft and after a few races the jockeys felt it was testing, tacky ground. This is what Tagur loves so Kevin Stott, taking the ride, was going to be positive knowing his mount would enjoy it and that making ground up would be very difficult. Despite dropping in grade, Tagur was quite a big price, set to go off at 8/1.
Away well Tagur was rousted along for the first few strides to ensure he was to the fore. On his inner Supreme Power also wanted to be positive so rather than take each other on, Kevin just sat alongside his rival, around a neck down. It’s was a good pace being set as the field settled down through the first furlong as they all bunched up to race down the centre of the track.
As the soft turf kicked up from the hooves of the runners, Tagur travelled well. Despite the testing ground the pace was strong throughout. Supreme Power was getting no leeway up front and it was Kevin who really ensured the leader was honest. Favourite Benjamin Thomas was sat just behind the lead so those up front were in the firing line come the business end.
The halfway point didn’t take long to arrive and the field were already starting to race so far from home. Tagur moved smoothly and really started to lay it down to the leader, edging closer to the front. By 3 1/2f from home Tagur had nosed his way to the lead which now caused a chain reaction. Supreme Power came under pressure which in turn caused those around to also come under the pump. The fav was still going ok but moving past the 3f marker it was Tagur who was powering along in front.
Kevin loosened the reins and Tagur skipped along merrily with just daylight in front. The race had been run at a good gallop and increased from a long way out. It looked to be taking it’s toll on everyone bar Tagur. By the time he move past the 2f marker he had a comfortable 3 length lead. Although some may think Tagur could come undone in the latter stages, with the pace shown through the race, Kevin was still oozing confidence. He had yet to ask the question ino he had plenty underneath him he waited for another 100 yards. With a comfortable lead and 1 1/2f to run Kevin decided that he had to ensure Tagur kept up to his work.
The final furlong was a procession. Once asked, Tagur kicked further clear and opened up into an unassailable 6 length lead. He showed that he was a class apart on the day and as Kevin checked the big screen he saw the race was over. The brakes were put on and Tagur cruised to an eased down 3 3/4 lengths victory.
Yes this was a step down in grade but Tagur could not have been any more impressive than this. When conditions are like this they really suit Tagur and especially when he is on a going day. That is his 3rd of the year and hopefully he can go on from this and maintain a good level of form. He acts on the all-weather so there is no reason why he cannot step back into handicap company and give owners Mr Andy Turton & Mr John Blackburn a few fun days out through the winter, with hopefully some more wins to his name.