Frodon Wouldn’t Have Won Old Roan Chase Even With Omitted Fences

It was great to win on the Colin Tizzard-trained Slate House at Cheltenham on Saturday and to see him back to something like his best form.

When I won a novice hurdle on him at Cheltenham a couple of seasons back I thought he was going to be a very good horse. He has had a few problems along the way. He took a heavy fall in the Supreme Novices Hurdle which left its mark on him last season.

Fair play to the team in Tizzard’s yard. They seem to have him back to his best and I was so pleased with Saturday’s performance. Hopefully it’s onwards and upwards for him for the rest of the season.

Al Dancer was impressive when he won his chasing debut at Cheltenham on Friday. He made a few “novicey” mistakes which you would expect, and you like to see horses make the odd mistake first time out. It was a decent race and he stays two miles very well.

It was interesting to hear Nigel Twiston-Davies say that they might take the hood off him the next day because he’s relaxed now.

Again, it was a great performance by Saint Calvados on Saturday on his first time out this season. I do still think that he will struggle at Grade One level though. A step up in trip is probably imminent for him.

Old Roan Chase
Forest Bihan was a very good winner of the Old Roan Chase on Sunday. It definitely didn’t play to Frodon’s strengths having the three fences on the straight omitted. It didn’t suit him. Frodon didn’t look comfortable throughout the race. He put down on Bryony which he wouldn’t usually do.

It looked like he wasn’t travelling with his usual zest.

I’m not sure that if the three fences had still been on the straight that he would have won anyway.

Kalashnikov and Forest Bihan were travelling strongly behind them before the turn in anyway. We can’t take credit away from Forest Bihan who was the deserving winner.