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17 Apr 17 19:19
Date Joined: 25 Feb 16
| Topic/replies: 107 | Blogger: rl91's blog
Another impressive bumper win today at Fairyhouse

Trying to figure out where he goes but hopefully he will be double digits for the any race market when they become available, I imagine he and blow by blow will be kept apart in either a Supreme/Neptune or Neptune/Albert Bartlett combination
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Report impossible123 December 2, 2018 10:56 PM GMT
..."long way till March and a lot of water to flow under the bridge...not at peak yet."

Connections must be deluded if they thought Samcro can beat Buveur D'Air fairly and squarely, all things being equal.
Report cyclops December 3, 2018 8:44 AM GMT
I don't think they do, but feel Samcro could be second best (highly debatable on what we've seen so far) and that plenty can happen between now and then and, indeed, in the race itself. They'r clutching at those straws.

I'd have thought Apples Jade is probably a better 2 mile hurdler but they seem to only have the Mares in sight for her.
Report baNjackst December 3, 2018 11:42 AM GMT
The facts about Samcro are he was a high class novice hurdler with a tall reputation to go with. His 2 races out of novice company have raised many questions,

firstly he went to Down Royal carrying a bit of condition and had to give 5 pound to Bedrock who beat him 1 and 1/2 lengths, he gave 8 pound to Sharjah in the same race and finished 5 lengths ahead of him. Sharjah has subsequently come out and won a G1 beating Faugheen.

Samcro's second run was to be in Ireland but owing to fast ground conditions it was decided not to risk it. The owner and trainer didn't shy away from travelling to England to take on the 2 time champion hurdle winner and best 2 mile novice of last season. The race was run to suit a speed merchant with bundles of race experience. Samcro was beaten by 8 lengths by dual champion hurdle winner. While visibly it looked a pasting one must consider Buveur D'air has run over obstacles 14 times losing only once in the supreme to stable companion Altior and Min. He is a true champion.

Buveur D'air himself is a special horse and probably the only horse ever to win his 2 novice chases and then to be reverted to hurdling.These decisions are normally reserved for failed chasers, A fantastic call by connections. Only the connections had the foresight and knowledge to come up with what is now one of the best decisions ever made about a horse. For that reason I wonder how some people believe they have better insight to Samcro than his own connections. For some to question the person paying the bills and the person who works with the horse day in day out. Is it not better that the 2nd or 3rd best at something not entitled to run against the best or should Buveur D'air be given a walkover like yesterdays race at leicester.

Finally Gigginstwon buy horses for one reason and one reason only "chasing" thats a known fact, they have no interest in hurdling unless its a stepping stone to winning chases, big chases. I for one believe Samcro is special and has proved he is special, how special the future will only tell but connections seem to be treating him different, and that might be a clue.
Report impossible123 December 3, 2018 12:22 PM GMT
All very well...Gigginstown and sportsmanship, etc. However, his run over hurdles and Champion Hurdle target this season was after a long deliberation by connections prior to the start of the season. But he'd been comprehensively beaten in the Fighting 5th (what more evidence does one need further?) beaten on conducive conditions eg fitter than Buveur D'Air and ground to suit. On saturday's showing Samcro might still need to up his game to beat Melon (if trained on) and running consistently.

Buveur D'Air was switched to fences in Feb after the issues regarding Faugheen; not a fluent jumper over fences either despite two wins as a novice chaser; joint fav for the JLT (I backed him too), but Hendo also had Top Notch and one other serious contender for the same race whose name escapes me presently.

Samcro is nothing special; he beat horses that were running in the wrong distance in the Neptune!

Without a shadow of a doubt, if I was the owner, I'd put Samcro over fences since last saturday (unless his introduction had been carped) and bin the aspiration of making a Champion Hurdle contender/winner of him; he's running over a distance too short; if (big IF) does become champion hurdler (by default), he'd be carped. Thus, nothing to gain for his effort.
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 12:31 PM GMT
Yep pretty much agree with all of that.

For a horse to be regarded as special, that horse needs to put in performances at the top level to merit that.
I have yet to see Samcro produce such a performance at the top level.
Report baNjackst December 3, 2018 12:44 PM GMT
Any horse that wins a Grade 1 race of any description is a Special horse, a horse that continues to win G1s is very very special. Anyone who thinks otherwise really hasn't the first clue of racing.
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 12:46 PM GMT
I wonder how some people believe they have better insight to Samcro than his own connections. For some to question the person paying the bills and the person who works with the horse day in day out. Is it not better that the 2nd or 3rd best at something not entitled to run against the best or should Buveur D'air be given a walkover like yesterdays race at leicester.

Watching horses run on the track is the best way of forming an opinion on a horse, not listening to connections.
Samcro has not even got close to proving hes either special or indeed a credible Ch Hurdle contender in his 2 runs over 2m this season. We can all see his 2 races, don't need his connections saying anything to the contrary,its clearly there for all to see.
As For taking part in the Champion Hurdle,fine if that's what they want, we have had plenty of horses turn up in the race in the past without the form to challenge the main contenders.
Personally think it better for the horse and those associated with him to be given entries that suit his strengths and ability. So far they aint,as the evidence on the track suggests.
Report baNjackst December 3, 2018 12:53 PM GMT
and how many horses of your own do you watch on the track?
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 12:55 PM GMT
Report baNjackst December 3, 2018 1:08 PM GMT
when Katchit was all smashed up by harchibald in fighting 5th connections would have been stone mad to listen to race viewers telling them they couldnt win a champion hurdle or getting anywhere near an animal that never came off the bridle. Some people only see to the end of there own nose or the most recent ran race either or both. December and March can throw up different results. But easy speaking when the odds are stacked with you.
Report duffy December 3, 2018 1:30 PM GMT
There are always exceptions, Binocular is another who got smashed up in this race and won the CH...hang on a minute there's a pattern here, let's get on the Fighting Fifth also ransGrin
Report impossible123 December 3, 2018 1:37 PM GMT
Must admit I was not into horseracing as enthusiastically until just a few years ago. Nevertheless, if memory serves was Harchibald not a " funny" character? Also, was Harchibald in the same vein as Beveur D'Air whose only "bad" run over hurdles was the injudicious ride given to him in The Supreme where he was held too far back against two horses of similar potential and ability eg Altior (could/would have won several Champion Hurdles if given the opportunities) and Min (went chasing too soon because of Faugheen)?

Samcro is nothing special over 2m hurdles, and has been proven so. Why the procrastination to go over fences then? Aiden made a wrong call with Saxon Warrior (Epsom/Irish Derby/commerce induced) unlike Gosden about Roaring Lion.

I think Buveur D'Air has probably improved post his wind-op or was inconvenienced prior to his 2nd Champion Hurdle triumph in 2018.
Report duffy December 3, 2018 1:49 PM GMT
Harchibald never ran in the Supreme, he was beat in the CH, with differing views on what happened, he wasn't held up too far, the argument is whether Carberry waited too long before committing him as the horse was cruising, my view was that he did nothing wrong, if he went earlier he would have been beat further......there was carnage on here though at the timeLaugh
Report Autocue December 3, 2018 2:19 PM GMT
"But easy speaking when the odds are stacked with you."
We knew Samcro had no chance against Buveur D'Air when he was favourite Shocked
Report baNjackst December 3, 2018 2:40 PM GMT
I believe connections have been proven right more often than the writers on this site which is easy proved. Its also refreshing and humble of them to endorse the greatness of the victor.

A yard full of greats in Co Meath and as he is a gelding there is no stud value hyping Samcro up, not like Aidan O Brien. Lets hope he stays sound because lots of people here insulting connections.
Report impossible123 December 3, 2018 3:09 PM GMT
Are we talking about connections or Samcro the horse as indicated by the thread? I've never questioned the decision making of connections especially the owners - I even supported their decision to remove horses from Mullins. But there had been (mooted) disagreements over the running of one or two of their charges eg Valseur Lido and Don Poli ie Ryanair instead of Gold Cup and Grand National instead of Gold Cup respectively.   

But I'm adamant Samcro is no Champion Hurdle winner (unless by default), and will be carped if gifted one. His career is over fences.
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 4:39 PM GMT
I really do not care a jot what has happened in the past re connections decisions on where to run a horse,not when talking about the subject here...Samcro,the past has nowt to do with him.
We all know connections can get it wrong at times,and will get it right more often.
I happen to think, based on what I have seen, that Samcro is not a 2m Hurdler at the top level.
Connections seem to think he can be.
If that's insulting them so be it, personally I think its just me disagreeing with them on the evidence I have seen on the track.

As for Samcro being special,we just have different ways of how a horse becomes special it seems.
No need for the aint got a clue about racing comment imo.
You think winning the Ballymore makes him special,i don't.
If he were to win some serious races at the senior level I will alter my view.
Report impossible123 December 3, 2018 4:46 PM GMT
Amongst other comments about the defeat of Samcro by Buveur D'Air Elliot said: "There is every chance he could step up in trip. I didn't get a chance to talk with (owners) Michael and Eddie (O'Leary) yet, but I'm sure we'll have a chat around the end of the week. He's come out of the race well, and he looks brilliant."
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 5:08 PM GMT
Well that would make sense I would think.
Nowt wrong with winning the Stayers hurdle.
People loved Inglis Drever and Big they were specialWink
Report impossible123 December 3, 2018 5:14 PM GMT
I understand The Stayers is open, but much less in prestige though. Also, 3m against the seasoned old boys eg Faugheen, Penhill, Supasundae, etc, is not a route I'd go down at this juncture; a run in a 20f event seems the logical route to go down, I believe.
Report buddeliea December 3, 2018 5:26 PM GMT
Well it is an option if they are thinking of stepping up in distance, although to be honest I aint convinced he would get 3m well enough at this stage.
Report irishone December 3, 2018 7:17 PM GMT
He gets three miles.
Report firstimevisor December 3, 2018 9:48 PM GMT
Looks like the silly season is back with regard to specific or optimum distances.

If Buveur D'air had stood on a nail on Saturday morning and missed the race then Samcro would have slammed Vision De Flos and Summerville Boy by 13/14 lengths. These were 2 of the top 2 mile novice hurdlers from last year. Now I accept that Summerville Boy probably didn't run his race but would anybody now be saying that Samcro isn't a 2 miler? This was Samcro's best ever performance over any trip. The fact is he's a good horse but ridiculously over-hyped and as of now he's a million miles away from being a superstar and his rating of 160(ish) is bang on the money.

BD would have run away from him over any trip so you could say that Samcro's optimum trip is whatever trip BD is not running over.

I'll be very surprised if Samcro doesn't run in the Champion Hurdle - why the hell not - and I'll be surprised if he finishes in the top 3 but racing is full of surprises. We get them every single day.

Apples Jade was unbelievable yesterday. I did't think we could see a better performance than BD 24 hours earlier but what she did was off the charts. And to think she's still just 6. Seems like she's been around forever. She is Gigginstown's best chance of winning the Champion Hurdle if they go that route.
Report jedi sophie December 3, 2018 11:20 PM GMT
Think Samcro being campaigned poorly but eway CH think has a fine chance.
Cheltenham suit far better and been won by many many stayers in past.
Including those from the staying novices
Report cyclops December 4, 2018 8:39 AM GMT
Apples Jade was great but what were the other jockeys doing?
Gifting her an 8 length lead, and making no effort to close until the home straight. Particularly Supersundae, who was miles off the pace before getting going fat too late. She's an absolutely top mare but I think a literal reading of Sunday's race flatters her.
Report shockster December 4, 2018 10:08 AM GMT
I think people in general are being too critical of Samcro.  So he's not as good as Buveur D'air but who is? Yes he's been over hyped but that's not his fault. Can't see there being 3 horses in front of him come March so a place in the Churdle is not the end of the world is it? I don't think he'll win it unless something happens to BD but it wouldn't totally shock me if he did!
Report Autocue December 4, 2018 11:45 AM GMT
Personally I don't feel I'm being critical of Samcro, just think he'd be better off chasing. When asked if Apples Jade would be routed to the champion hurdle the trainer said it would be the mares' race because he's a great believer in putting a horse in the race where it has the best chance of winning. Just the day before he said Samcro would stick to the champion hurdle because although he didn't think he could beat Buveur D'Air it's nice to be involved in a race featuring a good horse that should be appreciated. How do you reconcile those sentiments?
a) The O'Learys are forcing his hand
b) He's not convinced Samcro would make a better chaser than a hurdler
c) The O'Learys are forcing his hand
Report duffy December 4, 2018 2:09 PM GMT
For all the plaudits and privileged position Elliott is in it struck me watching that interview the other day that it must still have it's drawbacks. Elliott is completely at the beck and call of the O'learys, he was stood there whilst O'leary mugged him off IMO, you can say he was pulling his leg if you like, but for me Elliott's position is precarious, one day some time down the line they'll have a falling out and the horse boxes will arrive and Elliott will be looking for new owners.
Report impossible123 December 5, 2018 4:42 PM GMT
This beast is entered in virtually all the big races over hurdles and fences at Cheltenham except 4m; he's even in The Arkle despite being thumped by Buveur D'Air last saturday.

His next race could be the Long Walk Hurdle over 3m at Ascot on 22nd Dec.
Report irishone December 5, 2018 8:03 PM GMT
Duffy ..... If that happens i will take joseph next stop for elliots lot
Report duffy December 7, 2018 1:49 PM GMT
Don't know about that myself, Blake is outspoken and has been very vocal for instance with regards to Apples Jade and how she should be running in the CH, could see lots of aggro regarding race planning as time went on, don't think that stable would suit O'leary, i.e. simply rolling over.
Report Autocue December 7, 2018 2:46 PM GMT
I couldn't see the appeal of Apple's Jade in the champion. She has no top class form over 2m.
Report duffy December 7, 2018 3:09 PM GMT
Yes, just Like Annie Power.Grin
Report impossible123 December 7, 2018 3:17 PM GMT
Apple's Jade, Champion Hurdle (CH)? What a crazy thought, this time of the year (usually). Remember Limini and Vroum Vroum Mag? These two mediocrities were suggested CH materials too!
Report duffy December 7, 2018 3:29 PM GMT
There will be plenty of debate on this subject right up to Cheltenham, however, the reason I brought it up was in response to the suggestion that Joseph O'Brien would be a good fit for Gigginstown should Elliot ever step out of line and how I didn't think it would be.
Report impossible123 December 7, 2018 3:45 PM GMT
I think Joseph O'Brien is a wee bit too young, inexperienced and cavalier for the O'Learys with his placement of horses; Elliot is just fine,...a mistake now and again is good for the game; Aiden had quite a dew too last season, and so did Mullins.
Report Autocue December 8, 2018 11:53 AM GMT
Erm, apple's jade isn't just like Annie Power.
Report duffy December 8, 2018 3:12 PM GMT
You said AJ had no top class form at this point in relation to going into a CH, I said just like AP hadn't .very simple to understand I#d have thought...not comparing the horses relevant ability in the slightest, simply saying that AP like AJ had no top class 2 mile form prior to a CH.
Report impossible123 December 21, 2018 7:13 PM GMT
I think Samcro at 15/8 and certain runner (all things being equal) against Melon (3/1) and Laurina (7/2), surely this must be value given he was fav against Buveur D'Air, and the uncertainty regarding the other two; I'm just waiting for nrnb.
Report buddeliea December 28, 2018 12:46 PM GMT
Bearing in mind what happened at Newcastle when BD laughed at Samcro.......if Samcro were to beat Melon and co, we could have Verdana Blue as BD's main threat.
We do have to see Laurina sometime though, god knows when that will be!!!
Report Autocue December 28, 2018 4:21 PM GMT
I'm backing Melon tomorrow.
Report FOYLESWAR December 28, 2018 5:04 PM GMT
looks a decent contest good to see bedrock lining up . and with the current  champion hurdlers aura of invincibility slipped at kempton this race should  tell us a lot .
Report impossible123 December 28, 2018 5:53 PM GMT
He'll have to win tomorrow otherwise a forlorn hope for the Champion Hurdle (CH). But I do not think result will have a significant impact on the CH betting. And Buveur D'Air is a more backable price after yesterday's setback.
Report duffy December 29, 2018 2:38 PM GMT
Fighting Fifth has subsequently looked like a pile of dog poo
Report duffy December 29, 2018 2:38 PM GMT
behind the winner that is
Report stridingedge December 29, 2018 2:38 PM GMT
Report duffy December 29, 2018 2:43 PM GMT
The only race I could consider backing him in now would be the stayers, if he went chasing now the hype machine would once again kick into overdrive but it's too late and I couldn't touch him.
Report buddeliea December 29, 2018 2:54 PM GMT
Surely now the CH has to be abandoned.
Its been clear all season he aint up to it,and that has to be enough chances connections have had to prove most of us wrong.
Report Autocue December 29, 2018 3:42 PM GMT
I don't understand why he keeps going off favourite. Is it really weight of money or are the bookies creating a false fav to lure punters in?
Report The Dragon December 29, 2018 3:55 PM GMT
another poor performanceShockedSad
Report impossible123 December 29, 2018 5:46 PM GMT
I think he went 1.22 (in-running) just after jumping into the lead and xpected to pull away for a easy win; 2m is clearly too short for him nevertheless, I think he ran below par. Maybe a good rest could be prudent, and wait for Aintree Ryanair Hurdle or a small race over fences just prior.
Report sixtwosix December 29, 2018 6:47 PM GMT
Two of last years star juvinile hurdlers Samcro and Summerville Boy have looked awful this season
Report duffy December 29, 2018 7:59 PM GMT
Ironically amid all the negativity I think the horse's reputation is being enhanced when you look at it in the context of a 3 mile chaser because at the 2 mile distance his class is such that he can travel comfortably through the race but does get found out when he needs to quicken.

I think he's a 3 mile chaser through and through and a GC contender in due course and when you look back through the prism of a staying chaser at how he could lay up with the likes of BD and the best of the rest CH horses around I think that shows just how classy he is.

We all can see his limitations over 2 miles when the pace quickens  against the best, but for a 3 mile staying chaser to have performed as he has, it's actually enhancing his reputation.

Go back as far as you like and consider what Gold Cup winner could have performed as well as he has over a 2 mile trip in Grade 1 company.

He couldn't really go chasing this season now I suppose but I'd be strongly fancying him to fulfill his potential over fences when he gets a proper run at it.
Report impossible123 December 29, 2018 8:30 PM GMT
Unless something was responsible for this super lacklustre performance from Samcro - the beast could not even beat Tombstone -he'd be put away until next season to go chasing, according to Michael O'Leary.

No beating about the bush just straight to the point, spoken like a true businessman Mr O'Leary; the Stayers is just not a sufficiently prestigious race for Samcro, and I cannot agree more.
Report firstimevisor December 29, 2018 10:21 PM GMT
I'm just astonished that people are still talking about Samcro as though he's a great horse,if only he found his right trip or discipline.

He was the best of last seasons novices,that's all and as we have seen several times now they were a moderate bunch indeed.A few of the lesser known novices such as Sharjah and Bedrock have improved hand over fist this season and passed him out but the form of Samcro's two Grade 1 wins from last season has completely collapsed in open company.

He's a 20-1 shot in my book to win any novice chase in Cheltenham 2020 and I'd want at least 500-1 about him ever winning a Gold Cup.

He's a good horse who had a ridiculously hyped reputation which is now in tatters.In fairness to O Leary, he has always seemed embarrassed by the hype and always played it down.
There were many other vested interests - breeder,former handlers, former jockeys, sales company,sections of the media -who were hell bent on squeezing every last drop of publicity from the horse.

Its time for the hype to stop and allow the horse to carry on at his own level. He's still well capable of winning lots of good races.
Report buddeliea December 30, 2018 6:27 AM GMT
“He didn't battle. No bottle, no battle. Unless we can find something he won’t run again this year and we’d put him away until next season and go chasing with him,” O’Leary added.

Well whose fault is that then o'leary??

So unless they find something!!?? They have wasted a season.

Well done connections!!!
Report duffy December 30, 2018 7:11 AM GMT
How does Samcro not being able to beat the best 2 milers around detract from what he's likely to be in the fullness of time.

You can't judge a poor set of runs over one distance and use it to slight him over everything. What we have seen from him this season has no bearing whatsoever on what he'll be over time, he was running over the wrong distance, only if he fails over 3 miles can we start to write him off. The problem is that because of all the hype if he doesn't beat everything all of the time at all the distances we assume he's disappointing.

He's a 3 mile chaser and again I think that in time his exploits over 2 miles in open company over hurdles might be looked back on rather more fondly.

As far as his chances are of succeeding over staying trips his position is absolutely the same as it was before the season even started because he hasn't yet been asked to do the job he'll ultimately be doing....but that's a different story.
Report buddeliea December 30, 2018 7:24 AM GMT
Absolutely Duffy.

Its all about his owners and their decisions in his campaign this season.
I cannot believe for one moment that his trainer has genuinely thought he is a 2m hurdler.

I really hope this horse goes on to be a real goodun when asked to do what he should be doing.
Report impossible123 December 30, 2018 7:21 PM GMT
Off for the season; full MOT, according to Michael O'Leary.
Report Autocue December 31, 2018 4:26 PM GMT
Ah, so it's the horse that was wrong, not the chuckle brothers.
Report irishone December 31, 2018 4:50 PM GMT
Report impossible123 December 31, 2018 4:50 PM GMT
I think the Elliot might have got his way; he was more keened for the Champion Hurdle as he'd not had one horse sufficiently good enough for a proper go.
Report firstimevisor December 31, 2018 8:42 PM GMT
I can't for the life me see any reason for some of you having a pop at connections.
Samcro was an unbeaten champion novice hurdler and winter favourite for the champion hurdle. He took the same route as some of the great hurdlers - Dawn Run, Istabrak,Hardy Eustace, Faugheen to name just some of them.It hasn't worked out. He's short of the very top class. He's a bridle horse and will be a bridle horse whichever distance and whichever obstacles are put in front of him.
That's not O Leary's fault nor Elliott's fault.
Report duffy January 1, 2019 12:55 AM GMT
If you'd want 500's for the GC, would you lay me 250/1 please, I'm not greedyLaugh.

He isn't no bridal horse, he just lacks the ability to pick up at the business end of a top class 2 mile race.

I look at in the context of a horse that is going to be a staying chaser BUT has the necessary class to travel with ease through a 2 mile race in open company, whereas the vast majority of stayers put in the same position would be visibly throwing out distress signs a lot earlier in these contests that's how people SHOULD be viewing his exploits so far IMO.

It would be no surprise to me to see him win a Gold Cup in the fullness of time.

The top staying chasers going into next year, Santini, Delta Work et al if asked to compete in the same races that Samcro just has would be finishing abooooouuuutttt

When asked to do his proper job his high cruising speed relative to the staying division will be a mighty weapon IMO.
Report buddeliea January 1, 2019 8:40 AM GMT
Cannot believe anyone could actually think connections have not totally messed up this season.
Yes,he won a race that other Champion Hurdlers have done in the past,but the likes of Istabraq and Hardy Eustace actually looked like hurdlers,for me Samcro don't and his performances over hurdles this season have not been good enough to get anywhere near a Champion Hurdle,he has absolutely no speed at the end of the race to cope with proper 2 mile hurdlers.
Connections should have seen this a lot earlier than this week
I saw it after his 1st run this season and had it confirmed after his 2nd run.
That for me was the time to rethink.
By the way,the reason hes been favourite is the crazy hype surrounding him,bookies and mug punters,not his actual form on the race track.
He was fav against the 2 time Champion Hurdler after losing to Bedrock!!
BD laughed at him,and then next race hes fav again!! And finishes 5th of 6!!!
Comical stuff.
Report impossible123 January 1, 2019 12:40 PM GMT
Not able to beat Tombstone clearly indicated something is amiss with him ie mentally or physically; Don Cossack was less able than Samcro over 2m yet was an easy Gold Cup winner.

Do not give up on Samcro yet. A good long rest will rejuvenates his appetite and mentality for the game. And if campaign over a different discipline he'd fulfil the potential and expectations of his fans and connections.
Report irishone January 1, 2019 11:15 PM GMT
And how long is this good long rest going to last please impossible ?
Report firstimevisor January 2, 2019 12:31 AM GMT
So many contradictions. Samcro is better than 99.9% of all the hurdlers in training so its hardly comical stuff that connections would opt to keep him hurdling.I take it then that you are assuming the switch to chasing will make him better than 100% of all the chasers or will the connections have to shoulder the blame if it doesn't quite pan out like that?

Given that the only knowledge we have of Samcro right now is as a hurdler, who has an excellent jumping technique over a hurdle, and who will need to adopt a different technique when jumping a fence, then how can anyone possibly know at this stage how his career as a chaser will go. Its all purely based on more hype and reputation.So even if he goes through next season as an unbeaten champion novice chaser we will still be none the wiser as to how he will fare in open class

He isn't no bridal horse, he just lacks the ability to pick up at the business end of a top class 2 mile race.

he has absolutely no speed at the end of the race to cope with proper 2 mile hurdlers.

I really can't understand where either of you are coming from here.He travels like a dream and has bags of early speed.Two furlongs out at Leopardstown and he was cruising all over, and 2 lengths up on Supasundae who was flat to the boards. Yet 2 furlongs later Supasundae was 4 lengths in front of him.So over what trip would he have beaten Supasundae? Either he is a bridal horse or he doesn't stay 2 miles against top class opposition. It may be possible that he has some kind of medical issue but I doubt that very much. One thing I am certain of though, based on everything I've see this year, is that Samcro is not crying out for a further trip. He would take some stopping in a mile and a half hurdle race though if you can find one.
Report duffy January 2, 2019 3:56 AM GMT
Samcro is a good example of an interesting thing that many of us disagree on, you see, I think that if he ran over shorter again he'd be beat further still because I think there is a distinction between travelling well and then picking up and going to that next level again.

Over shorter the acceleration would need to be more acute, he wouldn't win the race by simply travelling well and he wouldn't win because he's gone not as far so therefore would have some kind of speed left, that's not how it works.

Over further he'd still travel with that same impressive manner but at the business end of the race the speed will not be such a requirement to see off his rivals as it is over 2 miles however the way in which he travels through his races I believe will break a lot of his opposition, he'll travel (to a degree) like a horse racing over shorter but with the ability to stay the longer distance, this will kill off the opposition. 

For him, as a stayer in my view to be able to travel as he does over 2 miles is a huge tick for him, he can't pick up as he just hasn't got the mechanics to do it.

Only my opinion but I take a lot of encouragement of what he's done in relation to what I see as his proper job.

O'leary's negativity is because he's viewing the horse within the context of a horse that he thought would be competitive over 2 miles, he's not looking at it in terms of him being a stayer.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 8:02 AM GMT
Samcro is better than 99.9% of all the hurdlers in training so its hardly comical stuff that connections would opt to keep him hurdling

My comical comment referred to the fact he is constantly made fav depite form showing he should not be.....bookies and mug punters.
I find his campaign this season baffling on evidence I see....not comical.

Better than 99.9%??......seen absolutely no evidence of that where it matters.....on the racetrack.
Thus far he won a stayers Ballymore and a few other novice hurdle races.
Since then beaten by Bedrock, laughed at by BD and beaten by Sharjah,Supasundae,Tombstone etc.
I hope for connections sake they do find something amiss(without wishing harm on him of course),because if they don't then surely this means hes been campaigned in races he has shown three times now,that they were not the right races for him.
The reason I say he has no speed at the end of the race,is because that's what I have concluded watching his races this season.
Yes, he could be a bridal horse, but watching the Ballymore I did not think that at the time.
I just think hes a horse that needs more of a trip and probably fences.
If he cannot jump a fence well enough,then up in trip over hurdles. Or go flat racing.
How far is anyones guess,a mate of mine reckons he needs 4 miles plus!!

One thing for sure, hes got us talking !! For a horse that's currently won a Ballymore and a few other novice races, I never thought I would be typing this much about him!!
Guess that's what hype does!!!
Report cyclops January 2, 2019 10:23 AM GMT
Couldn't agree more, budd, with all your comments. After his seasonal debut I said on this thread:

"He hasn't become a poor horse overnight, but he certainly did not look like a 2 mile hurdler. 2 miles on good ground against good horses is surely not what he wants. If he were mine, I'd be schooling him over fences and forgetting all about hurdling. He's rising 7 and you wouldn't want to get too deep into the season and then change tack with a horse this good.
Hurdling looked a puzzling decision - it looks even stranger if they persevere on today's evidence".

and you said:

"From what I have seen thus far, i see a potential good chaser that does not have the required speed for races at 2 miles, and a horse that may struggle to stay the Gold Cup distance.
At this early stage I see his future as a chaser at around 2 and a half miles.
I certainly have not seen anything to suggest the Champion Hurdle as realistic, and yesterday was a million miles away from that".

Yet he still gets backed blindly in 2 mile Grade 1 races.

To have a crack at the Champion looked dubious but that was the call. To persevere until getting to the stage they elect to draw stumps for the season represents perhaps the worst handling of a potentially very good horse you could ever see. Whether it was the owners' or trainer's call, a huge misjudgement.
Report firstimevisor January 2, 2019 11:53 AM GMT
Yes budd, better than 99.9%. Roughly 5000 horses ran over hurdles in 2018. Only 6 got higher official ratings. That's pretty good. If he were mine he'd be the horse of a lifetime,even as a hurdler and with his obvious limitations. If he can even reach the same standard over fences and make it into the top 10 chasers in 2 seasons time that would be pretty impressive too but this jury is out on that and I'll believe it when it happens but not just because of some strange belief that he was born to be a chaser and never a hurdler.

With regard to what you and Cyclops said after his seasonal debut - he gave Bedrock 5 lbs and Sharjah 10 lbs - both of them fit from summer racing. He beat Sharjah 5 lengths and gave him 10 lbs and Sharjah's next 2 runs have seen him bolt up in the 2 Grade 1s run in Ireland and become a serious Champion Hurdle candidate.You boys would be feeling very silly now if you had gone chasing with Samcro after that run.

On his next run he was hammered by BD but he also hammered the Supreme Novices hurdle winner and another proper grade 1 novice. On the evidence of that one run BD looked a superstar but Samcro at the very least showed,at that time, that he had improved a lot from his novice season.Subsequent performances painted a totally different picture of that race but, at the time, you would have been stone mad to pull the plug with him then.He was still a proper CH contender and one of the obvious alternatives to BD.

His latest run was awful.He jumped great, travelled great and found nil. Not sure whether he spat the dummy out when challenged or has stamina limitations which apparently in this PC age is now known as "not having the speed at the end of the race"! Either way I apportion no blame whatsoever to the connections for campaigning Samcro as a hurdler this season.His limitations were not evident last season. I've never known the horse as anything else other than as a hurdler.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 12:29 PM GMT
Yes Cyclops,agree with your comments and your last paragraph I think sums it up for me as far as his connections are concerned.

Oh ok FTV, you are saying 99.9% of ALL hurdlers....I thought you would have been comparing him to those that connections have chosen him to run against, the cream of 2m hurdlers.
It is obvious he aint better than 99.9% of them!!
I cannot explain the difference with his runs against Sharjah, but the first 2 defeats he suffered would have told me he aint CHurdle class, and would certainly have stopped me backing him at the odds hes been available at this season. Certainly would not be using Summerville Boy as any yardstick the way hes ran this season.Aint too sure about Bedrock either.
As for one of the obvious alternatives to BD....really?? You Use race fit terms when talking about Sharjah first time out....what about BD?,first time out and laughed at him.
Yes I can see an argument to have a crack at BD having seen Sharjah next time out,plus Bedrock had not been out,but after BD exposed his limitations at 2m,they really should have ended the 2m Churdle campaign imo.

Anyway you apportion no blame to connections,I do.
Fair enough.
Report irishone January 2, 2019 1:19 PM GMT
When youb say connections Budd... who do you actually mean ?

Gordon is the puppet on the string and is actively widening his stock of owners
Michael only wants to see a chaser and samcro is "not the second coming"

...... so do you agree its down to Eddie ?
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 1:54 PM GMT
Connections to me are owner and trainer.

I am not privy to what goes on in Gordon Elliott's yard and his relationship with the owners of Samcro.
I do know that normally trainers train and owners own, but I would imagine the real big owners like Gigginstown may well have a bigger say than some other owners.
I know that trainers make the entries of course, but whether sometimes they make entries they don't agree with because owner has told them,I would not know.
So I say connections.
Report firstimevisor January 2, 2019 2:33 PM GMT
Fair enough budd, you believe he's not a 2 miler and his future lies as a 2 and a half mile chaser, a cop out distance. So it should be races like the Durkan and Ryanair for him, where he can avoid the very best chasers around.And connections were wrong to try and dream of winning a Champion Hurdle with a champion novice hurdler cos they should have gone down this route earlier. You are probably right, in so far as he probably won't be good enough to beat the very best, but he won't really be achieving anything more as a chaser than he did as a hurdler.
Report cyclops January 2, 2019 3:24 PM GMT
" I've never known the horse as anything else other than as a hurdler".That may be the case but both before and after Cheltenham, all the talk was of a future Gold Cup winner in waiting. No-one at all mentioned him as a Champion Hurdler in waiting.

It was a bizarre decision, at the age of 6, to try the latter route, and one that has backfired. Yes, he may achieve no more over fences than hurdles and that will either be because he was simply hyped or because connections have compromised his chances by campaigning him in the wrong discipline for too long. If you really believe connections have campaigned him well, all I can do, like buddeliea, is disagree.
Report firstimevisor January 2, 2019 3:54 PM GMT
Cyclops,what does "all the talk" have to do with anything. He had not even run in a chase. He was unbeaten over hurdles. He jumps hurdles beautifully. He has loads of gears and loads of pace.What he lacks is the stomach for a fight against the best horses.This is nothing to do with racing over hurdles or racing over 2 miles.The year has not been wasted because we know a lot more about his limitations now, the same limitations he will face when he meets the best of them over fences.And even that is assuming he learns to jump fences as accurately as he jumps hurdles(Black Op!). You could also say that all the talk these days is that his bubble has burst and he will never win a Gold Cup.
Report cyclops January 2, 2019 4:38 PM GMT
I'm far from sure that he's established that he has no stomach for a fight. He was only beaten 7 lengths last time out, which you describe as "awful" while you believe his run against Buveur showed him in a good light, which I certainly didn't - Buveur could have won by 20 lengths had he be ridden to do so. What I believe has been established is that he is not a top class 2 mile hurdler (certainly on anything other than heavy ground).

It could be that he's gutless, but they said the same about Don Cossack when his hurdling performances fell short of the mark. If he is, he won't win top races under any discipline. But it could be that fences will be the making of him ; he certainly looks more like a chaser than a hurdler and I remain dismayed that he's been so poorly campaigned, given that so many associated with him are on record as saying he's the best horse they've ever known.
Report impossible123 January 2, 2019 5:20 PM GMT
I can understand the perseverance of connections on Samcro despite the humiliation dished out by Buveur D'Air (BD) - he was forced to make the running - because if BD does not show he'll probably win the Champion Hurdle on default as they believe Samcro has the beating of the rest. However, his trashing by Sharjah, and finishing behind Tombstone convinced connections ie owners and Elliot no-end that Samcro was not right either physically or mentally; his defeat by Bedrock was the initial indicator that the Samcro this season is not the Samcro of last season.

Let's hope he could come back for one race before the end of the season running over fences in a small meeting in Ireland.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 5:20 PM GMT
I aint sure his future is Ryanair type,that was my thoughts some time ago yes,but to be honest now I have no idea where he will end up.
I am pretty sure after this season though it wont be 2m hurdling.
Maybe,if they are happy with his hurdling,he may be stepped up and see if he can stay 3m.
Maybe he will take to fences and stay 3m and be a Gold Cup type.
God only knows!!
What is a worry though is if he simply has no stomach for fight to win races,
That's the case they have major problems with him.

As cyclops mentions,after the hype from people like Davy Russell and other jocks who were raving about him,and to a far far lesser extent,motor mouth Chapman......its all rather disappointing.

What would have happened if they had gone chasing start of season? don't know,but it surely would not have been worse than the current situation of having a horse that aint running.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 5:30 PM GMT
He got beat by Bedrock and then completely outclassed by BD who was not 100% race fit according to Henderson.
That should have told them then imo.
They werent the only ones though, cos he still started fav again in his next race.
Peope were backing hype and not looking at the formbook.
Maybe those closest to him were doing the same!!!
Report Autocue January 2, 2019 5:30 PM GMT
For a champion hurdler I'm looking for a horse that jumps hurdles quickly, flicking over them. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder so while Samcro might look beautiful to some over a hurdle I think he spends too long in the air and wrote as much on 2nd November. This doesn't bar a horse from winning a champion hurdle but it would have to be quicker between the hurdles than Samcro. As for saying he's better than 99.9% of hurdlers based on ratings, that's an opinion I don't share. Ratings are somebody's best guess of horses' relative ability so aren't reliable proof.
Report duffy January 2, 2019 5:47 PM GMT
I never had a problem with him being campaigned over hurdles to begin with this season, they obviously had a view on the CH contenders and thought it was worth having a go. However the problem came when they didn't see the writing on the wall even after his first attempt, however it has given us more evidence on him which isn't all bad.

I questioned his stamina at the end of the Ballymore, put that into the context of what we've seen since and I question it less so.

Come next season I'll be committing to him in staying chases with regards to all the big targets, certainly until he shows me different, there'll be a bit more juice in the prices too as he'll be more a distant memory and with all the recency bias of all the most recent festival winners foremost in peoples thoughts.
Report impossible123 January 2, 2019 5:52 PM GMT
Next season and beyond he could have Altior to deal with. What a prospect for the poor fellow...out of the frying pan into the fire!
Report firstimevisor January 2, 2019 6:54 PM GMT
Official ratings may be somebody's best guess(its a team effort) but they are the best and most informed guesses and I have yet to see a better system from a private operator.

Cyclops, believe me you cannot tell a great chaser from the look of him. The hype coming from Elliott's about Samcro before he ever ran was never based on him jumping ditches like Pegasus. He's a superb work horse with a cruising speed that the others cannot match.All this would be on the bridle of course.When he started off hurdling last year and went through the season without coming off the bridle,the hype went up a notch with every run. It was generally assumed that he would go chasing only because that's the usual O Leary way. So the hype about him winning Gold Cups was based purely on his hurdles exploits,nothing else.
When they decided to keep him hurdling, at least the hype about him winning a champion hurdle had some substance to it, as the champion novice.

Now that the hype has shown itself to be just that,and the bubble has burst, its probably time we all stopped assuming that Samcro is a superstar chaser in waiting. The prophets were right about him being a very good horse but got it wrong about just how good he is. And its probably fair to say the hype merchants were also bluffing just a little about his future brilliance as a chaser.
Report SoYouThink January 2, 2019 6:58 PM GMT
I also think Samcro's hurdling is top class. Don't really understand all this he needs a fence talk when I see him hurdling so fast. Whatever his problem is one thing we can rule out is the hurdles.

Personally I think the horse is either regressing, mentally or physically or both or he has other kind of problem that is only presenting itself at the end of races. I know the form of the novice hurdles from last year's Cheltenham has taken a few hits but there's no way the Samcro of last season would stop to a walk like he has done in the Fighting Fifth / Ryanair Hurdle.
Report cyclops January 2, 2019 7:04 PM GMT
Playing the ratings game, his performances this season were judged to have been a slight improvement on those during his novice days until the last one, which was judged a few pounds short. On that basis, he's not regressing but has failed to make the progress expected/hoped.

I disagree about the looks aspect. He's a big horse and the only big horse I know to have won a Champion is Comedy of Errors. Made for fences and while he jumps hurdles well enough, they don't allow him to exhibit the scope that many believed he will possess when tackling fences. Again, I'd quote Don Cossack as an Elliott horse who had tremendous ability in bumpers, flatlined as a hurdle but then showed his true ability as a chaser. Samcro should have been given that chance, if not at the start of the season, certainly after his first run.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 7:36 PM GMT
His hurdling is ok,but its not Champion Hurdle class.
Jumps too big too much and loses precious ground.
IF you watch BDair you can see the difference,pings them.Much faster hurdler.
Samcro jumps to me like a horse that would really suit a fence.
Looks like a chaser as well.
Report buddeliea January 2, 2019 8:18 PM GMT
Thought I would watch the Ballymore again after all this chat,
Samcro cruised to the lead and jumped the 2nd last going much better than all the others.
Coming to the last he was starting to get ridden but still going better.
After jumping the last, which Black op demolished,he was ridden quiet hard and given a couple of smacks.He worked hard to beat a horse that will be needing at least 3m by the looks of his runs this season,and the third home that day Next Destination ran like an out and out stayer.

Looking more and more to me like hes just not as good as was being made out to be.
Report Autocue January 3, 2019 1:34 PM GMT
You've said before that you rely on your own opinions and I completely agree. As punters interested in racing we're exposed to more and more media crap. Punters are the cannon fodder that keeps racing going. Racing is funded by the levy on bookmakers' profits so it is in racing's interest for punters to lose. The Racing Post seems to have become more reliant on bookies. You can't use their website without specifying a bookmaker. The Sporting Life is funded by Sky Sports. Trainers are sponsored by bookmakers. Podcasts are sponsored by bookmakers. They've infiltrated most of the media so it stands to reason we're going to be fed information that is in their interests not ours. My New Year's resolution is to avoid all the media yak on the run up to Cheltenham and spend the time I would have spent reading it on more useful pursuits.
Report Autocue January 3, 2019 1:39 PM GMT
I could also have said more races than ever are sponsored by bookies, owners like Ricci have strong links to bookies. They've ruined the ante-post markets. Restrictions are rife. Jeez, owners think they've got it tough...
Report impossible123 January 3, 2019 4:38 PM GMT
The trainers and jockeys should not be associated financially or otherwise with the bookies for reasons of conflict of interest and integrity of horse racing; they must be mutually exclusive and not exist in one another's pocket. Apart from Ireland I cannot think there is another country in the world with so close and at times cosy association of these two entities than here and Ireland.
Report ReaseHeath January 3, 2019 5:58 PM GMT

Jan 3, 2019 -- 7:34AM, Autocue wrote:

You've said before that you rely on your own opinions and I completely agree. As punters interested in racing we're exposed to more and more media crap. Punters are the cannon fodder that keeps racing going. Racing is funded by the levy on bookmakers' profits so it is in racing's interest for punters to lose. The Racing Post seems to have become more reliant on bookies. You can't use their website without specifying a bookmaker. The Sporting Life is funded by Sky Sports. Trainers are sponsored by bookmakers. Podcasts are sponsored by bookmakers. They've infiltrated most of the media so it stands to reason we're going to be fed information that is in their interests not ours. My New Year's resolution is to avoid all the media yak on the run up to Cheltenham and spend the time I would have spent reading it on more useful pursuits.

great post - and those more useful pursuits might include form book study and watching race replays...

would only caveat your opinion by drawing a distinction between fact and opinion - need to keep across factual information revealed by trainer e.g. I've just watched a clip where Olly Murphy confesses he left Brewin'upastorm in the Tolworth in error (not quite a fact I suppose but you get my drift)

Report buddeliea January 3, 2019 6:04 PM GMT
Totally agree....great post.
Completely echoes my thoughts.
Report Autocue January 3, 2019 8:55 PM GMT
Yes, better off spending the time on race replays. More so than the form book I think though obviously you need both. You need experience to make use of it and if anyone is starting out that's how I would recommend learning about the game. I've had enough of the rest as I find it impossible to sort the wheat from the chaff and the vast majority of the second hand hand information you get is the latter.
Report irishone January 3, 2019 11:16 PM GMT
Yes autocue without a doubt.
Last uear i happened to have previously watched rathvinden, balk do flos, ptesenting percy , and penhill all win at galway, my local track not to mention tiger roll.
Their performances were what put me on them.
That old adage ....believe nothing of what you hear
....and half of what you see was never more appropriate
Report impossible123 January 9, 2019 4:42 PM GMT
The boy is ill with a lung infection, and very doubtful for the Festival; Punchie could be on the agenda though, according to Eddie O'Leary. Get well soon, precocious one!
Report Movewiththetimes February 13, 2019 3:16 PM GMT
Don't throw away those antepost vouchers just yet Crazy
Report impossible123 February 13, 2019 3:53 PM GMT
Why Cheltenham over hurdles? Why not over fences at Aintree or Punchestown given he'll be going chasing? At least then he'd not be rushed into something not relevant to his career next season. My mind boggles!
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