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About: Nathaniel Barnett

Recent Posts by Nathaniel Barnett

Bassarabad wins in Wetherby slog

924822-340724Just under a year on from an attritional win at Warwick, Bassarabad was back to winning ways yesterday, getting the better of the long-time leader in another slog-fest of a staying handicap chase, on this occasion at Wetherby.

Though the eventual second (only two finished) looked to go off very hard, the winning time of 7m15s will surely be one of the slowest of the season, but that sort of extreme test seems to suit Bassarabad and he kept on stoutly up the home straight to win by 15 lengths under Alan Johns.  There are races for him at Ffos Las and Warwick (on the same card he won on last year) next month and hopefully he can make a very bold bid to follow up.  Congratulations to his owner Dave Pearn.

Yesterday was a desperately sad day for racing, with the news that Richard Woollacott had died, aged just 40.  Richard was a friend to everyone that knew him, a hugely popular character in National Hunt racing, and a trainer who was just beginning to enjoy the rewards for all the hard work he had put in, with Lalor winning the Grade 2 bumper at Aintree last April (pictured right) and Beer Goggles giving him his greatest success on the racecourse when winning the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury in December.  He will be very sorely missed by us all.


Late rally sees Spectator home in front

DT59NjeXUAEDOzH-1Ex-flat performer Spectator has been lightly-raced for us over hurdles since being purchased at the Horses In Training Sale in October 2016, but he remains a talented individual and hopefully yesterday’s last-gasp win at Musselburgh will be swiftly followed by further success in the coming weeks.

Having travelled powerfully in to the race on his reappearance at Carlisle in October only to wilt late on, he was again held up by Alan Johns on this first attempt at 2m4f and once again came into the home straight travelling best.  He joined the leaders before the second-last, a little earlier than ideal, and the game looked up after he made a mistake at the last. However, having been headed 100 yards out, he rallied very gamely to get his head in front again near the line.  The handicapper is unlikely to do much with his mark and hopefully we’ll find a similar contest for Spectator next time.

We briefly looked set for an across-the-card double when the exciting young Trixster hit the front at the last at Chepstow, but after jumping the flight well, he stumbled shortly afterwards and took quite a heavy fall.  Thankfully, he was none the worse afterwards and he is a lovely prospect going forwards.

There was also a good effort in defeat from Fraser Canyon, who finished runner-up at Musselburgh, a month on from shedding his maiden tag at the same course.



Happy New Year!

311216-248-Theligny-1Happy New Year from all the team at Pant Wilkin Stables!

Our new video for 2018 is now live!  Please click here to view.

A year on from Theligny‘s win at Newbury on New Year’s Eve 2016 (pictured right), he came desperately close to repeating the feat there last week.  Clear when jumping the last after making most of the running, he was frustratingly nabbed close to the line.  However, it was great to see him return to form and we will most likely look to step him up in trip now, with a valuable 2m7f handicap hurdle at Sandown Park at the beginning of February under consideration.

Later on the card, there was encouragement to be taken from Tanit River‘s run in what was a very competitive staying handicap chase.  Though he tired up the home straight, I was very pleased with the enthusiasm he showed during the race, jumping and travelling well, and it was good to see the handicapper subsequently give him a chance by dropping him 7lbs to a mark of 123.

I was pleased to see Tanacando make an encouraging handicap debut when runner-up at Warwick on New Year’s Eve, whilst there have also been promising runs of late from Sergio (on reappearance) and Calarules, who finished fourth at Catterick on his first start for us and should have plenty more to offer.

Hopefully Chepstow’s Welsh National card will get the go-ahead and, if so, we could have a couple of runners there, with Jaunty Flyer a possible for the maiden hurdle and new recruit Laugharne entered in the 3m handicap hurdle.


Merry Christmas

IMG_8917Merry Christmas to all our owners and blog readers from all the team at Pant Wilkin Stables!

We have six runners across four meetings on Boxing Day, so there is lots of racing action to look forward and hopefully we can celebrate a festive winner!

We will also have runners at Chepstow on the 27th, though we’ll have to wait until declarations tomorrow to see if Tanit River gets in at the bottom of the weights for the Welsh National – fingers crossed!




Our two nominees!

image2 (1) 23471903_10155189961233613_6657717807352305936_nWe are incredibly proud to have two nominees shortlisted for the 2018 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards.

Our Head Lass Katie Ash and Travelling Head Lass Andrea Kelly have both been nominated for the Leadership award and are amongst ten finalists in that category.   That in itself is a huge achievement and a recognition of the incredible job they do.

They both fully deserve their nomination and hopefully will both have a place in the final three, with the final stage of judging to decide the winner taking place on Monday 19th February in London.

We’re hoping for a Pant Wilkin dead-heat!


Bells Of Ailsworth wins impressively at Bangor

Bells Of Ailsworth has been a real star for his owners Steve Grys and Mick O’Boyle and he continued his improvement at Bangor yesterday with a facile success in the 3m handicap chase under Alan Johns.

A three-time winner last season, including twice over fences, he had run a very promising race on his return to action at Wetherby last month and duly stepped up on that yesterday, travelling very sweetly and jumping well en route to a very easy win.  In front at the third last, he was soon well clear of some tiring rivals and crossed the line 23 lengths in front of his nearest pursuer.

We haven’t gone any plans for him just yet and will wait until his new mark is published tomorrow, but he will be forced to step up in grade and we’ll look for something early in the New Year.

I was really pleased with the run of Master Dancer in what was a hugely competitive handicap hurdle at Newbury.  Upped 12lbs for his win at Cheltenham, he travelled as well as anything and I think he’d have gone close with a stronger gallop.  He is clearly still improving and we may look to the Lanzarote at Kempton Park in January for his next run.


Nathans back to winning ways

NathansA winner at Aintree last term and successful in five of his previous 18 starts for us, it was great to see Nathans Pride off the mark at just the second time of asking over fences at Musselburgh yesterday.

Having run in some competitive handicaps over hurdles of late, he appreciated the drop in grade and smaller field, travelling very strongly throughout, fencing fluently and, after hitting the front three out, finding plenty for pressure to hold off his challengers.

The handicapper shouldn’t be too harsh on him, given the margin of victory was under a length, but hopefully Nathans Pride will get plenty of confidence from this success and we’ll look for something over fences again next time – there is a valuable 2m4f contest at Leicester at the end of the month and he could head there next.  Congratulations to his owner Paul Bowtell!

I was also delighted with the effort of Point Of Principle, who finished second to Champion Bumper winner in the novice hurdle. A smart horse in bumpers last season and fourth on his previous outing over hurdles behind the high-class Slate House, hopefully he can win his maiden hurdle next time before going on to better things.


Bleu Et Noir wins on the flat

BEN2Bleu Et Noir is better known as a useful hurdler, winning three times for us in 2016, but the son of Enrique showed he also has the speed to make an impression on the level with a facile success in a 1m1f maiden at Wolverhampton yesterday under Kieran O’Neill.

Having made all for his three victories over hurdles, we have tried to settle him on the flat and he seems to be responding well to being held up in his races.  Settled in behind the leaders, he quickened nicely once Kieran sent him for home and quickly put the race to bed, eventually winning by six lengths.

Whilst I am very keen to get him back over hurdles this season, it would be nice to try and win another on the flat first,so he is likely to run again on the All-Weather in the near future.  Congratulations to his owner Alan Peterson.

Bleu Et Noir


Timely Gift off the mark!

DOcnI5WWsAEf2wO-2At the end of a wet afternoon, it was great to finish with a winner at Ffos Las, Timely Gift, got the better of a very close finish in the concluding conditional jockey’s handicap hurdle.

A scopey four year old son of Presenting, the ground had been a concern pre-race, but he seemed to take to it very well and, in front a long way from home, kept on galloping resolutely under a strong ride from George Blackwell to hold off the persistent challenge of the eventual runner-up.

It was a fine performance on just his fifth career start, especially given he is just a four year old and looks sure to improve with time and experience.  He’ll have a quiet week now and we won’t rush him back to the track, but he has plenty more to offer and I am delighted for his owners, several of whom are new to the yard.

There was a promising run in defeat from Trixtser who, like Timely Gift, was bought at the Goffs Land Rover Sale in 2016.  A four year old son of Beneficialout of a half-sister to Welsh National winner Emperor’s Choice, he looks a nice young stayer in the making.  I was also very pleased to see Bassarabad return to form with a good effort in the handicap chase.  He is a thorough stayer, at his best when conditions are testing and hopefully he will not be long in winning again.


Chozen off the mark at Carlisle

IMG_1374 (2)Carlisle has become a happy hunting ground for us and Chozen became our fourth winner from eight runners there in the past two seasons with a win on his handicap debut yesterday under a fine ride from Alan Johns.

Held up in rear, the ex-Irish pointer jumped well and travelled nicely through the field on the approach to the home straight.  Not everything went to plan from there, as he was short of room on more than one occasion up the hill, but thankfully Alan managed to negotiate a path up the stands’ side rail and Chozen kept on willing to win by just over a length.

A half-brother to last season’s Grade 2-winning novice Mount Mews, Chozen looks to have plenty more to offer and hopefully he can make a bold bid to follow up next time.  Congratulations to his owner Dave Pearn!



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