THE YARD has been in a rich vein of form this month and so it continued yesterday with a Kempton 38/1 double, courtesy of Villette and Blaze Of Hearts.
The Sixties Icon 4yo filly, Villette, started the ball rolling when recording her third win at Kempton and her third victory in her last five outings. Ridden for the first time yesterday by Robert Havlin, the well-backed 11/2 shot was always handy in the 1m2f contest and she forged clear inside the final furlong to win comfortably by a length and three-quarters.
She is a truly versatile middle distance performer, having won from a mile to a mile and a half and having won on both turf and all-weather. Perhaps the only surprising thing about out latest success was her single figure starting price as her previous four wins have been at 20/1, 50/1, 33/1 and 25/1!
Blaze Of Hearts was one of two stable runners in the 7f handicap, which was the first time he had run over the trip since his racecourse debut three years ago. Going off a well backed 5/1, the son of Canford Cliffs was nevertheless “second string” according to the market with the yard’s Kadrizzi the 2/1 favourite.
Given a strong ride from behind by Robert Winston, who has now won on him in three of his four victories, the 5yo prevailed by a neck from Treachorous with Kadrizzi back in fourth. Congratulations to owner, Roger Beadle, who bought the horse at Tattersalls Horses in Training sale last year.
Blaze’s win was the seventh this month and the stable’s 37th success this year which means 2018 is numerically the third best ever season, two behind the record 39 winners in 2013. With still plenty of racing in December, would you bet against Harper Lodge Farm reaching the 40?