What a cracking inmate Overturn has been for the Donald McCain stable, the seven year old made it two from two over hurdles this season on Saturday after making all to win the Grade 2 Ascot Hurdle. It is true that he has the Nicky Henderson trained, Oscar Whisky to thank for this latest victory, as had he not tripped up at the last flight, it was almost certain that he would have sufficient toe to go past Overturn on the run in.
But trip he did, falling very heavily, whilst Overturn, who jumped perfectly throughout the 2½ mile race, went on to win by a massive 27 lengths from the Nick Williams trained, For Non Stop, with the 2008 Champion Hurdler, Katchit, a further 20 lengths back in third place.
The win marks another impressive entry onto the resume of the seven year old Overturn, who has big race wins on both the flat and over jumps. Included on his record are wins in both the Welsh and Scottish Champion Hurdle as well as the 2010 Galway Hurdle in Ireland and has also enjoyed wins on the flat, landing the 2010 Northumberland Plate and the 2011 Chester Cup earlier this year. Whilst there is little doubt that he is a little short of top class, this son of Barathea who has now earned a huge £495,000 of prize money for his owner, Tim Leslie and looks a very good prospect over this longer 2½ mile trip and possibly further. Certainly the stable believe that there is a lot more to come from him and they might be tempted to run him in the Grade One Fighting Fifth Hurdle as early as this coming Saturday at Newcastle.
As far as Oscar Whisky is concerned, Henderson and jockey, Barry Geraghty were very pleased with his performance. He was giving 8lbs to Overturn and had the race all but won before the tumble at the last. Henderson has not plotted a course for this season as yet for Oscar Whisky but the Champion Hurdle, in which he finished third last season, would appear to be one target but he may be worth trying at the longer trip and a tilt at taking on Big Bucks in the Ladbrokes World Hurdle over three miles at the Festival cannot be world out.