Ballywood is a strapping gelding by Ballingarry out of a mare who bred two other winners in France. Impressive over hurdles in his native country, where he won and was placed, Alan King was patient with him in his first season racing for us.   

Having shown ability over hurdles on his only start over fences in France, Ballywood made an immediate impact for his new trainer in a 2m 2f Handicap Chase at Taunton in December 2018.  Making light of a handicap rating of 127, he jumped well that day and then followed up in a Novices’ Handicap Chase over two miles at Doncaster on Boxing Day.  Having put up another fine display, he returned to the same track in January to contest a Grade 2 Chase and finished a very good second to a very progressive Paul Nicholls-trained horse and then won for a third time at Ludlow in March with something in hand.  He went for a Grade 2 over 2m 4f at the Ayr Festival where he ran with credit but this might have been a race too many at the end of a long season.

Ballywood enjoyed a decent summer break and looked in excellent condition when he returned to Alan's yard.  He started off this season in a Listed Handicap Chase at Ascot at the beginning of November, where he was rather fresh for his first run and parted company with Tom Cannon at the fifth.  He then finished a fine third in a £125,000 Handicap Chase at Ascot, where he didn't particularly enjoy the soft going, the same comments applying to his latest run when again finishing a close third in a Class 2 Handicap Chase at Cheltenham. Atrocious ground conditions meant that Alan King was unable to run Ballywood until the Cheltenham Festival, where he put up a very creditable display finishing sixth in one of the hottest renewals of the Grand Annual that anyone can remember.

Having had a relaxing summer of grass Ballywood returned to the track in his usual consistent fashion. He jumped well and travlled powerfuly to put in a fantastic seasonal debut finishing in second place behind a race fit youngster who is likely to prove to be a very smart sort. This was very pleasing and Alan sent him to Cheltenham for his next run, a highly competitive chase at Cheltenham where he looked sure to finish second before tiring up the stiff hill. Ballywood's next run at Cheltenham was not quite the result we were hoping for however he did jump particularly well but just seemed to get out paced three from home in a competitive field. We hope he will put this behind him and get into the winners enclosure very soon.



Ballingarry (IRE)

Miss Hollywood (FR)

Sadler's Wells

Flamenco Wave

True Brave

Senza Problemi

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