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  1. #1

    Finian's Rainbow (IRE) : Chaser trained by Nicky Henderson

    Finian's Rainbow (IRE)
    Age: 9 (Foaled May 29th, 2003)
    Sex: Bay Gelding
    Breeding: Tiraaz - Trinity Gale (Strong Gale)
    Trainer: N J Henderson
    Owner: Mr Michael Buckley
    Last edited by mayo; 11-04-2012 at 09:06 PM.

  2. #2
    October 2012

    Nicky Henderson

    Top-class, two-mile chaser and just as good over two and a half, winning the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham and the Melling Chase over a longer trip at Aintree. “His first stop will be Ascot then straight on to the King George – it looks a good option given how well he performed over two and a half at Aintree. A year ago his work wasn’t great but he’s very sharp at the moment – his recent work on the grass has been impressive.”

    Barry Geraghty

    Absolutely top marks to the trainer for getting him ready to win the Champion Chase at Cheltenham then the Melling Chase at Aintree – a great performance from the Seven Barrows team. Nicky just waited then gradually produced him for the big day and it was probably only a couple of weeks before Cheltenham that the horse really came to himself. He gets two and a half well and is certainly possible for the King George over three on Boxing Day.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Sprinter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Nick Luck Five to follow

    Finian's Rainbow (Nicky Henderson)

    For all I need to tell you nothing of this horse’s achievements, there is every reason to consider how his campaign might unfold this time around.

    First, his primary objective is to stretch his speed over three miles in the King George. This may, of course, prove fruitless, but given his pedigree and how he was campaigned early in his career, there is a strong chance that his stamina will hold. He was very smart at two miles; he could be fairly deadly at three.

    If Finian's Rainbow were to win the King George, connections will target the Gold Cup, with owner Michael Buckley showing no appetite for the Ryanair.

    When considering there is a strongish disincentive to tackle Sprinter Sacre, Sanctuaire & co, it may be worth tossing a fiver on this one at a bog price for the Gold Cup. You can get 33-1 with William Hill.

  4. #4
    Barry's Blog

    By staying over for Monday morning I was able to school FINIAN’S RAINBOW who continues in good order. He went through his paces very well.

    Entered in Amlin 1965 on Saturday.

  5. #5
    ED Chamberlain

    Finian's Rainbow is another star returning to the track this weekend. He's set to run in the Amlin Chase at Ascot.

    He's the Champion Chaser yet I still don't think this horse gets the credit he deserves. Maybe that's because Sprinter Sacre steals the headlines in the Henderson stable. Finian's Rainbow is so much more relaxed these days that I fancy him to star over longer trips this season.

    I think he'll win on Saturday and is my long-term fancy for the King George, and then possibly the Gold Cup. I think he's that good.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Statto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Andy Gibson Profile on ATR

    9-y-o; bay gelding
    Breeding: Tiraaz (USA) - Trinity Gale (IRE)
    Trained by N J Henderson
    Form: 121-1211

    He is a 142-rated hurdler who had his stamina limitations exposed when failing to get home at Newbury in the 2009 Grade 1 Challow Hurdle run over two miles and five furlongs on testing ground. He completed his novice hurdle season with an admirable fifth-place finish behind Peddlers Cross in the Grade 1 Neptune Hurdle at the 2010 Cheltenham Festival. He has won seven out of nine chases to date and met his only defeats over the larger obstacles when finishing second to Captain Chris in the 2011 Grade 1 Arkle Chase and when filling the same position behind Somersby in the 2012 Grade 1 Victor Chandler Chase

    He initiated his chasing career with two facile wins at Newbury over two miles and a furlong over lesser opposition. He was unchallenged for the lead on both occasions which led to his connections decision to hold him up on his Cheltenham prep run in the Grade Two Kingmaker Chase at Warwick in February 2011. Presumably the idea was to get him running and jumping with horsesí around him and, in that sense, the plan was successful; however, his jumping suffered as a result of the new tactics and he was arguably fortunate to win the race after his nearest rival broke down fatally on the run to the final fence. After his less than ordinary round of jumping at Warwick one can assume that his connections will not be in a hurry to repeat the hold-up tactics in future. It should be noted that this run also coincided with the only time to date that Barry Geraghty has not been on board.

    Finianís Rainbow ran quite keenly in the 2011 Arkle Chase and was subsequently comfortably outstayed by the winner from the last fence. He followed up by winning the Grade 1 Maghull Chase at Aintree in April 2011 on his final start of the season. That course and distance at Aintree was probably perfect conditions to show his free running style in best light; nevertheless, he was more than a shade fortunate to win the race as his closest rival in the betting Ghizao blundered away his chance when challenging and going best two fences from home.

    He settled much better in winning three from four races in the 2011/2012 season, including the Champion Chase at Cheltenham; he stepped up in trip to win the Melling Chase at Aintree by a comfortable seven lengths on his final start. If we take the time of the Melling Chase into account the ground that day was probably nearer too good to soft compared with the official going description of good. This would have been to the disadvantage of his main danger and the second favourite on the day Albertas Run which definitely puts the substance of that form into some doubt; likewise, the 2012 Champion Chase was far from a vintage renewal. If we also take his fortunate victory over Ghizao into account as well as his narrow defeat by the generally disappointing Somersby it would be easy to conclude that off a mark of 173 there is more than a possibility that Finianís Rainbow could be overrated going into the new season; moreover, with the Henderson camp having Sprinter Sacre to rely on for the Champion Chase, Finianís Rainbow will, no doubt, be campaigned over further than the minimum trip.

    Finianís Rainbow is likely to run his best races when competing as a fresh horse; furthermore, he has a perfect four from four record first time out and is, therefore, one to particularly mark up on his seasonal debut. His best form has been when racing on a sound surface and, although he won last time out over two and a half miles, he had previously ran out of stamina over a furlong further when racing on testing going at Newbury in 2009. This could turn out to be useful evidence in the event of him stepping up to race over three miles in the King George Chase; particularly if the word soft appears in the going description at Kempton on Boxing Day.

  7. #7
    Barrys Blog

    FINIAN’S RAINBOW (2.10) is the reigning Champion Two-Mile Chaser and if there was a title for leading two and a half mile hurdler then it would be Oscar Whisky’s.

    As I reported earlier this month, I’ve been absolutely delighted with the progress of both horses in their work and schooling and I’m sure both are at the right state of readiness to get their seasons off in style.

    Finian’s Rainbow is in a very good place at the moment and I don’t think we could be happier with him in the Amlin 1965 Chase over two miles three.

    Although he won the Champion Chase at Cheltenham he proved at Aintree that he gets two and a half ok when he beat Wishfull Thinking by a comfortable seven lengths. That shouldn’t have surprised anyone because he won his novice hurdle over this trip at Ascot in February 2010.

    As for the ground, well, there’s no reason to think he won’t handle it as well as anything else because although his form on good going is very smart, he was only beaten a length in the Challow Hurdle at Newbury on heavy over two five on his second hurdle run in December 2009.

    Having said that, I am aware that this isn’t all about one horse because Ghizao was only a couple of lengths behind us at Aintree two seasons ago after he made a bad mistake.

    And the race conditions give Captain Chris a definite chance. The 10lb he gets means that there’s only 3lb between us on official ratings - and he did beat Finian’s in the Arkle of their novice chasing season.

    Despite all that, I’d be very hopeful that Finian’s will be able to give that weight away because he’s giving out all the right signals.

  8. #8
    Barrys Blog

    ’s only natural that people centred on the disappointing run of FINIAN’S RAINBOW in the Amlin 1965 Chase - after all, he’s the reigning Champion Chaser.

    But from the time we turned away from the stands his jumping began to come under pressure and I’m sure that was because of the very soft ground.

    I had to ask for a big effort at the ditch at the bottom of the hill which I’d never normally have to do on better ground.

    He felt great and looked great and was fit and well so I was very surprised because he had handled bad conditions as a young horse in the Challow Hurdle.

    Having said that, I have seen horses handle soft ground over hurdles and not handle it as well over fences. Forpadydeplasterer won a Grade 1 novice hurdle at Leopardstown on heavy ground but couldn’t win a beginners chase on heavy – there’s so much more effort involved.

    I’d been around Finian’s for the past five weeks and I knew how well he was and never had any negatives going into Saturday’s race.

    I’d be very surprised if it was anything other than the ground.

  9. #9
    Mordin says he wont stay ...

    FINIAN'S RAINBOW (31) tired rapidly in the closing stages to get beat over twenty lengths. After he'd clocked an astonishingly slow time when winning the Grade 1 Melling Chase over two and a half miles at Aintree last year I noted that I would be wary of taking the run as evidence Finian's Rainbow really stays two and a half miles. That win was against out of form rivals at the end of the season on fast ground around a tight track. The time Finian's Rainbow clocked only earned him a rating of 35 from me. That's barely good enough to win an average class 3 event.

    Finian's Rainbow remains smart around two miles. The only two times he's lost over the distance in ten tries came in very strongly run races on stiff tracks where he tired late and finished second in Grade 1 contests. If he goes back to two miles I'll be interested in his chances against any opposition. If he's kept to longer trips I'll oppose him with confidence.

  10. #10
    Owner of Finian's Rainbow states the plan is to run at Ascot on Sunday & then take a view on his Festival objective.

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