Harry Cobden: Riding Out The Storm

Blogs | 18th February 2022

Harry Cobden looks forward to a Grade 1 Saturday where he has big hopes of landing his second Ascot Chase win! Read all his exclusive thoughts...

I have certainly had a bit of a spring in my step since getting off Bravemansgame at Newbury last Saturday.  

He jumped superbly and for him to concede so much weight to his nearest rivals – who are no mugs at all – shows what a serious unit our horse is. 

Paul was convinced beforehand that fitness-wise he was not 100% wound up for Newbury. So I’m hopeful he can take another step forward for the big test in March.  

It is such a privilege to be associated with a talented horse like him; hopefully, this is just the start of an epic partnership.  


3:00pm – Cap Du Mathan 

I thought he was impressive when winning last time out at Taunton. He had had a pretty lengthy lay off beforehand and we feel sure he can improve again.  

He’s quite a keen horse, so I think we’ll probably look to repeat the tactics and try to get to the lead early doors. If he can relax at the head of the pack, then he’ll play a big hand at the business end of the race.  

He comes into this with a big chance.  

3:38pm – Saint Calvados ⭐️

This looks a proper Grade 1 contest. Connections of each of the eight runners will feel like they have got a viable chance of winning. 

This is only Saint Calvados’s first season with us, but he has already made a big impression on the team at home. He is a big, strapping horse with lots of ability and we think this contest appears tailormade for him.  

He ran a blinder to finish third in the King George, not seeing out the full extent of the three-mile race. The drop back to two miles and five furlongs for this Grade 1 will help him in that regard.  

In terms of tactics, I’ll look to get some cover and avoid using too much petrol early in the race. There is a lot of rain around, so the softened ground will no doubt bring stamina into play.  

I schooled him earlier in the week and he felt superb. He’d be my best chance of a winner on the day, I think. 

Harry Cobden after winning the 2019 Ascot Chase

4:10pm – Guillemot  

A spare ride for a stable I don’t often get the opportunity to ride for. I’d be lying if I said I knew masses about the horse. 

I can see he’s got a nice low weight and that he’s recently had a breathing operation. Hopefully that procedure can resolve the issue that made him run disappointingly last time. 

His early odds are a little harsh as far as I can tell. He finished a close second off a 1lb lower handicap mark only 3 runs ago; so, there is certainly scope for him to be competitive.  

4:45pm – Kylenoe Dancer  

Another spare ride that I have not sat on before. She comes into this with just two runs under her belt, so it is hard to know how good she might be.  

Her first run at Newbury looked encouraging, but she didn’t show herself off to best effect last time at Taunton.  

She’s raced at the back of the pack on both starts, so tactically I assume that’s how we’ll look to ride her on Saturday.  

Hopefully, she can settle and we can pick off as many horses as possible in the home straight. By that stage of the day the ground will be really soft, so conserving as much energy as possible for the final two furlongs will be the key.