Shishkin to go the distance at Aintree
SHISHKIN is set to step up to three miles at next month’s Grand National meeting after again struggling for speed when runner-up to Envoi Allen in the Ryanair Chase.
Nicky Henderson’s chaser was in trouble early in the race and made a series of jumping errors, with a particularly bad one at the third-last that knocked him back to sixth place.
Fourth jumping the last, Nico de Boinville-ridden Shishkin ran on to grab second by a neck from Hitman. Henderson said: ‘He wasn’t really travelling like we hoped he would have been, even early. He just didn’t look as though he was that happy. ‘He’s done really well to finish where he has. Maybe I should have listened to all those people who said, “Go three and a quarter miles (in the Gold Cup)”, because he looked as though he wanted it.
‘He finished really strong. He did make one bad mistake coming down the hill. He got back into it, though, so he’s determined if nothing else. They’ve done very well to finish second. I certainly want to run him at Aintree in four weeks’ time. Going over three miles in the Bowl Chase is the obvious thing now.’
De Boinville (left) said: ‘It never went right from when the tape went up. Even when we were at the start, he was just curling up on me a bit and going back on his haunches. Over the first two fences, he just wasn’t taking me anywhere. ‘When he won last month’s Ascot Chase, I was able to jump and travel and dictate where I wanted to be. This time I was pushed here, there and everywhere.’