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Ten to Follow Summer Card
Last years Jumps season was one of the most memorable in recent history as a mixture of superstars and surprises competed in some truly outstanding races all season long.

The season runs from October to April and here is our list of ten horses we selected to watch in the coming year.

Be sure to tune into these pages to follow their progress so far!

The story so far
Runs: 41
Wins: 15
2nd: 9
3rd: 2

Don't forget to book your tickets now.

Our Ten to Follow:
Denman
Trainer: Paul Nicholls
Usual Jockey: Sam Thomas
Owner: Paul K. Barber and Mrs. M. Findlay

What we said: The people's favourite, Denman took the Gold Cup crown from his stable mate Kauto Star last March and became a champion in every sense of the word.

In his fourteen races under rules, he has finished in the front 13 times and second once.

Now that the Hennessy has been ruled out, his Cheltenham prep is likely to begin in the New Year with The Gold Cup once again his aim, where a rematch with Kauto Star is predicted.

This big tank of a horse has proved himself one of the most consistent and talented chasers of the moment and a true superstar.

The story so far: Races:3, Form 22F

Suffered an irregular heartbeat which kept him out until the Levy Board Chase at Kempton where he was summarily dispatched by Madison Du Berlais. Denman looked nothing like the unstoppable force of 2007/08 and was withdrawn from the Grand National as a result. The run did him good though and he reappeared in the Cheltenham Gold Cup where we produced a wonderfully brave performance to finish 2nd behind the incredible Kauto Star and show that this great Chaser is far from finished. His final run of the season ended in near disaster when falling 2 from home in the Totesport Bowl, but the damage was only a cut leg and "The Tank" will be back next year.

Kauto Star
Trainer: Paul Nicholls
Usual Jockey: Ruby Walsh
Owner: Clive Smith

What we said: Never mentioned out of the same breath as Denman, Kauto Star was second in the Gold Cup to his stablemate at the end of last year after a fantastic season, winning a competitive race at Ascot in February by an impressive eight lengths from Monet's Garden, and destroying a classy field in the King George by 11 lengths in December.

He delighted the crowds with eight runs last season, a testament to the toughness of the classy horse, and was rewarded for his efforts with a second Order of Merit title. His trademark jumping error at the last fence occasionally still reveals itself, although his jumping improved steadily.

The King George is a certainty for him again this year, where he will attempt to make it a third successive victory, a feat only matched by Wayward Lad and Desert Orchid, and he is favourite to retain his Order of Merit title yet again.

The story so far: Races: 4, Form: 1U11

A comfortable start to the season at Down Royal was followed by disappointment in the Betfair Chase at haydock in November when he unseated Sam Thomas at the last when under pressure. Thoroughly silenced his doubters on Boxing Day though with a sensational third successive King George VI Chase at Kempton, joining the Great Desert Orchid as triple consecutive winners of the mid-season championship. He then capped the season with a breathtaking victory in the Gold Cup, becoming the first horse ever to reclaim the Championship after losing it, and in doing so becoming one of the all time greats of the sport.

Voy Por Ustedes
Trainer: Alan King
Usual Jockey: Robert Thornton
Owner: Sir Robert Ogden

What we said: Voy Por Ustedes is often described as tough and consistent. His last run of the 2007/2008 season is easier described as spectacular. A change in trip and the good ground saw a resurgence of the horse to his best form, beating top-rated horse of the year Master Minded by 18 lengths in the John Smiths Melling Chase.

Trainer Alan King has suggested that the King George could be a target for him, and 2m4f will be the minimum trip. He is a genuine challenger over this distance, and is set to start the season at Aintree in the Old Roan Chase.

His tenacity and talent combine to make him of the most dependable horses to follow through the season, and the change of trip will give him a chance to shine once again.

The story so far: Races: 5, Form: 43121

Put in a solid run under top weight to claim 4th in the Old Roan Chase on his reappearance at Aintree, and followed this with another creditable run finding only Kauto Star and Albertas Run too good in the King George over a longer than usual trip. Finally got off the mark in the Grade 1 Ascot Chase with a fine performance, and as a result was pronounced hot favourite for the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham. However on the day he clearly wasnt right, made a few uncharacteristic blunders and was beaten by a superb Imperial Commander. He then came back stronger though to take the Grade 1 Melling Chase at Aintree with a fantastic battling victory, and his superb consistency throughout the season saw him crowned 2008/09 Order of Merit champion
Master Minded
Trainer: Paul Nicholls
Usual Jockey: Ruby Walsh
Owner: Clive Smith

What we said: The top rated horse of last season, on a mark of 186, Master Minded is undoubtedly the top two mile chaser in Great Britain. He had his first win in this country in January, and followed it up with two successive wins at Newbury and then at Cheltenham in the Queen Mother Champion Chase, when he won by 19 lengths.

He is on course for the Tingle Creek Chase on the 6th December where Paul Nicholls is hoping that he can emulate his stable companions Twist Magic and Kauto Star with victory.

The suggestion that the best of Master Minded is still yet to come makes him one of the most exciting prospects for the up-coming season.

The story so far: Races: 3, Form: 111

Ran only once in the second half 2008 in a magnificent Tingle Creek victory where he looked every inch the unstoppable force that he is. 2009 continued in the same vein with an awe-ispiring stroll to win the Ascot Chase in January. Followed this up by dominating the Champion Chase at Cheltenham and confirming his status as the highest rated Chaser in the world.
Katchit
Trainer: Alan King
Usual Jockey: Robert Thornton
Owner: D S J P Syndicate

What we said: Although small in stature, Katchit makes up for his size in sheer valour, as seen when he won the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham in March 2008.

His trainer Alan King is positive about his chances of repeating that success, and has a tough campaign mapped out for his little superstar which will include the Christmas Hurdle and a possible trip to Punchestown after Cheltenham.

He is one of the most popular and recognisable stars from last year, and with a consistency and toughness that is matched only by Voy Por Ustedes, his return to the track will be welcomed by his army of adoring followers.

The story so far: Races 5, Form: 43260

A disappointing season for the 2008 Champion Hurdle winner. Was just outpaced by the impressive Snap Tie in October at Kempton before being solidly beaten by Chomba Womba at Wincanton in November and then finding 3 too good in the Boylesports International, one of whom was the awe-inspiring Binocular. Next was Cheltenham where he finished 6 out of a field of 23 in the Champion Hurdle, thus relinquishing his crown to Punjabi, before a shocking run at Aintree finishing 12th of 16 to end a poor season.
Sizing Europe
Trainer: Henry De Bromhead
Usual Jockey: Andrew McNamara
Owner: Alan Potts

What we said: Sizing Europe won the AIG Europe Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown last season, and set off favourite for the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham the next time out. He was not right from the off, and finished down the field.

That was his last performance that season, and connections believe that after his long rest he will come back as strong as ever, with the Champion Hurdle once again his target.

The story so far: Races 2, Form: 25

A slightly disappointing return for the highly rated Irish trained gelding, being outpaced by Hardy Eustace in the Grade 1 at Punchestown before tiring quickly on the home straight at Leopardstown when beaten by Sublimity (and 4 others). Fans still believe there is life in him yet though and look forward to him defying critics later in the season.
Rippling Ring
Trainer: Paul Nicholls
Usual Jockey: Ruby Walsh
Owner: The Stewart Family

What we said: Rippling Ring finished last year on a rating of 131, and could prove himself a useful performer off such a decent handicap mark.

Previously trained in South Africa, he has had only two runs for the Nicholls stable which culminated in a fifth placed finish at the Cheltenham Festival after which it transpired that he had a pulled muscles. The stable has an enviable success rate with imports- Kauto Star from France, Denman from Ireland- and this season could see him overturn previous form to put himself in the top league.

He is likely to spend this year over hurdles, as his runs last year showed that he was still relatively green with his jumping.

The story so far: Races 4, Form: 5502

Hugely disappointing to date arriving 5th in both outings before a non-entity of a run at Cheltenham, finishing 23rd in the Vincent o'Brien Handicap Hurdle. This was followed by a switch to Chasing at Hereford where he came 2nd of 6 beaten 40 lengths by Mount Benger, but maybe will hold more promise as a Chaser next season. A big let down for his followers and not Ten to Follow's best work!
Big Buck's
Trainer: Paul Nicholls
Usual Jockey: Ruby Walsh
Owner: The Stewart Family

What we said: The current favourite for the Hennessey now that Denman's reappearance is postponed, Big Buck's will run off a decent enough handicap mark which he earned when outstaying Battlecry to win at Aintree last April.

Connections declared after that run that he would not be pitted against Denman and Kauto Star in the 2009 Gold Cup. If his stable companions are lightly campaigned, Big Buck's could well prove to be one of the breadwinners of the Nicholls yard, particularly if his jumping improves.

Could he be the superstar that Andy Stewart has been searching for?

The story so far: Races 5, Form: U1111

A huge success story. Suffered a high profile defeat at the Hennessy when unseating Sam Thomas at the last when handy but under pressure- one of the rides which cost Thomas his ride on Master Minded in the Tingle Creek. However, came back to form in fine style with a surprise switch to Hurdles when winning the Unicoin Homes Handicap Hurdle under Ruby Walsh at Cheltenham on New Years Day. He followed this up with a victory in the Cleve Hurdle at Cheltenham's Festival Trials day, before a breathtaking victory in the World Hurdle at Cheltenham, seeing off Kasbah Bliss and Punchestowns in fine style. He confirmed his status as the best staying hurdler in the business at Aintree with a win in the Liverpool Hurdle, and ends the season on a higher handicap rating than the great Inglis Drever. A phenomenal success.
On Raglan Road
Trainer: Howard Johnson
Usual Jockey: Denis O'Regan
Owner: Andrea and Graham Wylie

What we said: An ex point-to-pointer, he was bought at Doncaster in May for 320,000gns by Howard Johnson, and won his first race for the trainer at Hexham by nearly half the track. It was a Novice hurdle, and he went off short price favourite and justified the money on his back by putting in an excellent performance.

Depending on his handicap mark out of this race, he could be one to move swiftly up the ranks.

The story so far: Races 6, Form: 122F4F

Showed real promise at the beginning of his Novice season with a victory at Hexham followed by two 2nds at Aintree and Sandown. Well worth following but needs to keep progressing as there are question marks over a couple of one-paced finishes in those 2nd places. Fell when warm favourite at Doncaster and then ran promisingly 4th in the ALbert Bartlett Novices Hurdle at the Festival, showing signs of progressing again next year, before falling at Aintree when beaten. One to still keep an eye on next year.
Bakbenscher
Trainer: Alan King
Usual Jockey: Robert Thornton
Owner: Three Line Whip

What we said: A very useful bumper horse, he has won 2 National Hunt flat races under Thornton, and finished third on his one other start.

Picked by Alan King as the one to watch for next season, if his jumping is up to scratch there is no reason why he would not make a useful novice.

His dam was useful over hurdles and fences, and so with any luck, Bakbenscher should transfer his flat form to jumps.

The story so far: Races 4, Form: 1712

Followed up his Bumper form with two highly impressive victories sandwiching a mistake-riddled off-day at Ascot. Highly progressive but had speed limitations exposed at Sandown in March when beaten by an admittedly very impressive Big Eared Fran. A great spot by Ten to Follow and sure to make an impression next season.


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