I can’t recall seeing so many scopey jumps from one horse in a race as Might Bite threw on his seasonal debut today in the 188Bet Future Stars Intermediate Chase at Sandown.
Those jumps must have been costly energy-wise and he looked to be just tiring a shade approaching the Pond. Kept on well enough but didn’t do more than you’d expect given the opposition. Henderson said he’d had a good blow afterwards but had been working ‘very, very well’.
The trainer must have done a proper job on him over the summer to wring out that tendency to dash along madly but I wonder if it’s affected the natural spark the horse has. When he took the lead he jumped with more economy and they’ll need to be careful and keep him to pacey races, I think. Raising that backend the way he does when going too slow increases the chance of overbalancing on landing, especially in such a big horse.
Although they’ve done a number on his early keenness, he looked for a moment to be ready to down tools again today after the last. Trouble is, if they overdo the waiting tactics and try to keep him under restraint until the run-in, he might sulk.
Might Bite is a fascinating animal and no doubting his talent but I’m not quite sure what to make of his prospects after that. Most of the bookies seemed to feel the same; he is generally 3-1 (from 7-2) for the King George, while he’s widely available at 8-1 for the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup, although Hills were impressed, halving his price for that to 5/1.
You can watch the race here