It was fitting that our final runner of the 2015 Flat season , Cryptic, should bring up fifty winners on the domestic front in the impressive manner that he did, as he had given us little inkling that he was up to winning a race off his mark of 65. In fact, he had shown so little in his previous races that we had considered getting rid of him after his second outing. However, he improved quite markedly at Wolverhampton third time out and, presumably, is a horse that has taken some time for the penny to drop. His chance at Kempton looked remote after being hampered jumping out of the stalls which pushed him back to last place in a race that was not run at a strong pace. Turning in to the home straight he made up a serious amount of ground once the race began in earnest to get up close home. Had he kept straight and made things easier for his rider he would have won more readily so we hope that this will not persuade the official handicapper to raise him above 70 in view of the very bunched finish. He is yet to race on turf, and there is no reason why he will not handle the surface, especially fast ground, and hopefully he will continue to surprise us next year.
Finally we would like to wish all our owners, staff and readers a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year. Looking forward to 2016, if the Bedford House team can reach fifty winners again next year then we will be more than pleased, as the recent well documented loss of a significant number of good horses, who would have been three or four year olds next year, will undoubtedly keep our number of winners down. If we can hit a strike rate approaching 20%, as we have done for the past few seasons and welcome a few more two year old winners than usual that should ensure we keep our names in the headlines for another year.