Sunday, 6 May 2012
: Black And Bent
will have four more jumps races this campaign including a crack at the Grand National Hurdle-Grand National Steeplechase double.
Managing part-owner Mike Symons outlined the remaining races of the preparation for the star jumper who is yet to qualify for steeplechasing.Black And Bent
will shoot for the outright record of 10 successive wins over the jumps in a set weights plus penalties open hurdle (3300m) at Mornington on May 20.
He will then make his 'chasing debut in the Australian Steeplechase (3900m) at Sandown on June 2.
"We want to get him qualified and probably give him a run over the fences rather than him having his first run in the Grand National Steeplechase," Symons said.
"He's going to be carrying top weight. The last thing you'd want is for a first time 'chaser over an extended trip to tip over.
"So we'll school him and probably race him over the fences before the Grand National Steeple and then come back to the Grand National Hurdle before the Grand National Steeplechase."
"Steve Pateman reckons he'll be better at it.
"He's a smart jumper. He's never looked like falling but they are much different obstacles though.
"The fences are firm and much larger so you need to be a proficient jumper."
The $200,000 Grand National Hurdle (3900m) is at Sandown on July 15 while the $250,000 Grand National Steeplechase (4500m) is run at the same track two weeks later.
Only two horses have achieved the double in the same year - Redleap (1892) and Mosstrooper (1930).
Symons is also a part-owner of the highly promising Palmero who made it two from two over the jumps when he won last Thursday's 0-120 Hurdle (3200m) at Warrnambool by eight lengths from Berlioz.
The Hawk Wing six-year-old was purchased out of New Zealand after he won his jumping debut, a Rotorua Maiden Hurdle (2800m), by 14 lengths on September 25.
"We'll take him slowly through his grades. We never push our horses too hard too early," Symons said.
"You'd like to think he could measure up to the better races next season but he won't get there too soon."