The hugely-exciting Clondaw Kaempfer (4g Oscar-Gra-Bri, by Rashar) made it three wins from as many starts under Rules when recording a comfortable victory in the Listed Betfair Novices’ Hurdle over two miles at Haydock on Friday.
Partnered by Jason Maguire, the son of Oscar faced a challenge from Lienosus but had little difficulty in asserting for an ultimately comfortable three and three-quarter lengths success.
The former Irish point-to-pointer, who was bred by Philip Hore, was bought by trainer Donald McCain for owners Tim Leslie and David Gorton for £130,000 at Cheltenham in April a few days after an easy success in a Fairyhouse bumper.
“He’s still only a four-year-old and we don’t want to rush him,” said McCain. “He is starting to look quite smart and is getting a lot sharper at home. This was not his ground today – he didn’t hate it but he is just not as effective on it. When you have good races like this on your doorstep though, it makes sense to go for them. I don’t know where he would go next. We will just go home and go quietly with him. He could go for something over Christmas, possibly back here at Haydock.”
Meanwhile, Minella Class (7g Oscar-Louisas Dream, by Supreme Leader) gave Oscar another smart winner on the same afternoon when running out an easy victor of a high-class beginners’ chase at Ascot.
Trainer Nicky Henderson believes that last season’s G1 Tolworth Hurdle winner, another former point-to-pointer bred at the Mangan family’s Conna Stud, could have a promising season ahead of him over fences.
“It’s hard work out there and he was a bit careful, but he had a bad fall last season at Newbury and used to be a bit over ambitious,” Henderson told PA Sport. “He won a Tolworth Hurdle but has had problems with his wind and this was good experience. I won’t step him up too much yet.”