Theydon Grey Has Point To Prove


Theydon Grey has a point to prove in a bid to establish himself among the higher class of horses in the racing field. The four-year-old has flashed potential during his 17-race career, winning five meets, including an outstanding 2017 campaign when he won three races on the bounce.


However, his inconsistent form has held him check from reaching his potential, limiting him to compete at smaller venues when the stakes are low.

Theydon Grey was expected to race at York Racecourse where Oddschecker backed him to triumph for the fourth time on the bounce.

However, he was pulled from the meet to compete at Newmarket where he failed to make the grade.

Trainer William Haggas faces a challenge to raise the level of his charge's performance for his next outing at the same venue in October for the Cesarewitch Handicap.

Signs Of Talent

The Grey Gelding began his career at Newmarket in the Maiden Stakes in August 2015. He was considered a rank outsider with the lowest odds in the field but still finished in fifth place out of 10 competitors.

He built on his decent performance by earning his first victory at Chelmsford City. On this occasion, he was named as the favourite and delivered on expectations to secure the triumph by three-and-a-quarter lengths ahead of his nearest rival.

However, his progress was halted by poor performances in back-to-back meets. Theydon Grey finished in sixth place in the Nursery at Newmarket before placing in fourth out out of five competitors in his bow at the Epsom Downs.

On his return to Chelmsford City, the Grey Gelding was an outsider in a competitive field. He produced a fine outing to get back to winning ways in familiar surroundings, beating the rest of the field by two-and-three-quarter lengths.

Theydon Grey failed to build on his success in his next race at Chelmsford City. When the quality of the field was elevated, he could not match the pace of Ennaadd, finishing off the pace of the winner of the Six Places In Six Races Handicap, although he did manage to place in third.

The Grey Gelding displayed talent in his early races and the potential to kick on from his two victories. However, the next period of his career would frustrating and prompt change behind-the-scenes.

Frustration Builds

Peter Charalambous' charge continued his career in a night race at Chelmsford City. The field again was extremely talented with Roger Varian's Toumar considered the favourite to win the meet.

The race did not go to form as Manjaam claimed the victory ahead of Ice Royal and Toumar, with Theydon Grey finishing in fourth place and off the pace down the final stretch.

He did have the opportunity to bounce back at Wolverhampton in the bet365 Handicap. The race proved to be one of the most fiercely contest of his time in the sport but the contest played to form as the favourite Turn Tide claimed the victory.

Theydon Grey put in an impressive performance as he matched the pace of the leaders throughout but was just edged out down the final furlong, missing out on third place by a nose.

The Grey Gelding was handed the opportunity to impress at the London Gold Cup in Newbury. He was considered a rank outsider for the win among an array of quality horses.

However, he could not produce a challenge in the contest, but could have claimed a top-five finish only to suffer a poor final furlong to drop back down to ninth.

Yarmouth offered a chance to find his confidence once again at a lesser event, although the quality of the field was still challenging. He was considered the least likely to triumph but put in a fine run to place in second, trailing the winner You're Hired by one-and-three-quarter lengths.

Theydon Grey's final race of 2016 proved to be the worst of his career. At Kempton Races, he was off the pace form the start and was never able to recover from his sluggish display in the early stages, resulting in a last-place finish.

The Grey Gelding's inconsistent form prompted a change in trainer from Charalambous to Haggas, which would be the catalyst to see the horse return to near his best.

Discovering His Best Form

Theydon Grey's first race of the 2017 campaign came at Yarmouth in the Ted Pennell 66th Birthday Handicap.

Under Haggas' tenure and following his solid outing at the racecourse last time out, he was considered the favourite to secure the win. However, his drought was to continue as he finished off the pace in fourth place, failing to contend for the victory down the final furlong.

The four-year-old was back on the track three weeks later at York. There, he began to find a semblance of form in a larger field of horses, although he could not end his seven-race spell without a victory.

He finished in fourth place as he could not produce the speed needed down the final stretch to challenge the top three horses.

Haggas made a change in jockey for Theydon Grey's next outing at York, bringing Georgia Cox into the saddle. The formula proved to be successful for the Grey Gelding as he secured his first win in eight attempts, triumphing in the Join Club Godolphin Handicap.

He needed to be at his best throughout the contest as he pushed all the way to the line by American horse Chancery, but he just had enough pace to beat out his rival by a neck.

Haggas' charge now had the challenge of building off his success to secure back-to-back triumphs for the first time in his career. Cox remained in the saddle for the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Handicap, in which Theydon Grey was considered the favourite in a talented field.

The Grey Gelding needed another strong performance right to end to secure the win but he accomplished the feat once again, narrowly edging out Waiting For Ritchie on the line by a head.

The John Smith's Stayers' Handicap yielded his third victory on the bounce, highlighting his dominant form at York Racecourse in Class 3 as he defeated race favourite Byron Flyer in the process.

Failing To Make The Grade
His victory prompted Haggas to pull him out of his next meeting at York and into the Class 2 meet the CJ Murfitt Ltd Handicap at Newmarket.

Due to his form, Theydon Grey was considered a decent outside bet. He made a strong start to the meet and tracked the leader from the outset, but he was unable to maintain his pace in the closing stages and fell down into fifth place.

The four-year-old now has time on his side to prepare himself from his next race at Newmarkt in his desperate bid to make a mark in the upper echelons of the sport.

He has the potential as proven by his three victories on the bounce at York thus far this term, but he needs to be able to raise the level of his performances when it matters the most.

Although he has victories under his belt, arguably the best display of his career came at Yarmouth in the Dan Hague Rails Bookmaker Handicap when he finished second in Class 2.

That display proved that the Grey Gelding does have the speed to challenge those calibre of horses, but whether he can perform to that level on a consistent basis is another matter.

Haggas has come across a successful formula with Cox in the saddle, with the jockey bringing out the best in the four-year-old.

The change in trainer at the start of the season has also been a fruitful endeavour, although whether Haggas can eek out any more out of the horse is another matter. The next race of his career will be telling in his fortunes for the future.


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