Harry Cobden: Big Guns Out For Super Saturday

Blogs | 11th February 2022

Get the latest from top jockey Harry Cobden as he looks forward to getting back on board some of the Manor Farm superstars this weekend! 

I suppose the last few weeks have been a little quieter than usual, though we normally have a quietish time in January, for reasons explained in my previous blog. 

Quite simply the horses haven’t been finishing their races as well as we’d like. But the boss is confident he’s got to the bottom of the issue and hopefully we’re all back on track now.  

We’ve got a really top team of horses to attack the weekend with and we see no reason why they all can’t show their best.  

Saturday’s card at Newbury is always a great day and one I’ve many happy memories of. Let’s hope we can make a few more tomorrow.  

My Saturday Rides


A multiple Grade 1 winner, he’s right up there with the very best horses trained in Britain.  

It may look a little unorthodox to some that he runs here, but the team are keen to give him a proper workout ahead of his major targets in the  Spring.   

The fact we have to step down into handicap company isn’t something that concerns us. Yes, he’ll have to shoulder more weight than his rivals, but he’s a big horse and I think he’s got so much class it shouldn’t stop him.  

Hopefully this’ll act as a nice prep run and will keep him ticking over. Tactically he’s pretty versatile, so we’ll just play the hand we’re dealt once the tapes go up.  


He gave a really good account of himself at Kempton last time in what was a hard run King George.  

Frodon and Bryony Frost went a pretty hot gallop and it meant I never got the opportunity to give Clan Des Obeaux a breather. Ideally I’d have let him fill up the petrol tank by easing off slightly on the home turn, but at that stage the Irish challengers were coming to us and we had to keep going.  

He finished second though and still ran a great race. He’s 10 now but still showed that he retains serious ability, so I think he’ll take all the beating on Saturday.  

As far as tactics go, I’ll just keep it simple, get him in a good rhythm and let his class do the talking.  

3:00pm – HITMAN

We definitely haven’t seen the best of this horse yet. He’s a really lovely, athletic mover and everyone at home thinks there’s loads more to come from him.  

He’s still only a six-year-old but has got plenty of experience for a horse his age. The one thing we’ve learned about him is that he doesn’t do masses when he gets to the lead late on in a race.  

I’ll aim to make a challenge late on, ideally not before the last fence (If we’re still travelling well!). He’s won at the track before so there’s no gremlins there.  

Sceau Royal is a top quality opponent, so Hitman will need to be at his best to win this.  


We’re really excited to see what this horse can do; we think he’s got a huge chance. Albeit this is invariably one of the most competitive races of the year and half the field will probably feel their horse is well handicapped! 

One thing we have done since his last run is worked very hard on his jumping – he must’ve jumped hundreds of obstacles since Ascot – and he looks much more assured now.  

The key to him is getting him into a good rhythm early doors. If we can stay out of trouble and get him settled I’m confident he’ll see out his race really strongly.  

I managed to win this race in 2019 with Pic D’Orhy who is similar to this horse in that they both could stretch out to two and a half miles with little issue.  

4:10pm – SONIGINO

He pulled so hard that his race was over within 3 hurdles last time out. Once I realized the game was up I did my best to wrestle him in behind horses and teach him to settle.  

Again, I’ll be aiming to dop him at the back of the pack and get him to relax. If he does consent to relax then I don’t doubt he’s got the talent to play a big role here.  

He’s not what I’d label a “keen horse”, he’s a fairly relaxed customer at home. But given his recent behaviour at the racecourse, we’ll do everything we can to keep a lid on him in the prelims. If we walk him out of the paddock last and canter him down to the start separately then hopefully that’ll help see him to best effect.  


A really cracking horse – he’s won all three of his bumpers which very few horses do.  

The form from his Listed win at Cheltenham has worked out nicely, so we can only be hopeful that he can take another step forward here.  

He’s not the flashiest of horses at home, but in my experience it’s rare that the really good ones blow your mind on the gallops.  

Frodon, Bravemansgame, Clan Des Obeaux – they all just go about their business in a nice professional way. This chap has a long way to go to get to their level, but he’s very professional which is a great sign. 

Very few horses win Listed bumpers with a penalty though, so he’ll have to be pretty special to win what’s usually one of the toughest bumper races of the year in Britain.