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  • Ian Ender

JUSTFORJAMES.

JUSTFORJAMES 08 June 2009. Dr Massini-Over The Road Owner-J4J Partnership.


For the first three seasons of his racing career Justforjames was trained in Conna, County Cork by Sean Aherne. His first three runs were all in point to points on the Irish circuit, where he achieved the unenviable form figures of 'FPU, ' so things could only get better, and indeed at the forth attempt he finally completed, keeping on for a respectable second place. In March 2015, he got his head in front at the fifth attempt at Ballynoe, and progress was confirmed at Cork three weeks later in a bumper, when making a winning rules debut. After his Summer break he returned in December for his hurdles campaign, placing in all five races, but never really threatening a win, although earning a Racing Post Rating of 116.

He arrived at Oakwood Stables in the Autumn of 2016, and made his debut for the yard in December at Sedgefield in a novice hurdle, and he couldn't have made a more impressive start, by beating his only serious rival, the Donald McCain trained Derintoher Yank by 34 lengths, in receipt of 14lb. This exciting performance was matched on Boxing Day at the same venue, when again under jockey Joe Wright, he trounced the opposition, this time by 11 lengths. His next race, again at Sedgefield turned out to be disappointing, as he could only finish a distant third, and on his return in March, once again at the County Durham track, he finished second of four, to the Tim Easterby trained Bollin Ace, the handicappers assessment of 128 seemed about right.

After his Summer break, he returned to his second home, Sedgefield, to make his chasing debut, but he could only manage fifth of the six runners.He was taking time to come to hand, and also making too many mistakes at this new discipline, and it wasn't until his fifth attempt over the larger obstacles that he got his head back in front again. A combination of a drop back in trip, a much reduced mark of 111, and a return to Sedgefield, with Becky Smith in the saddle, did the trick. He followed up with a sound third placing at Carlisle, before winning his forth race at Sedgefield in April, he was now back to a mark of 120.

He returned in November 2018, and like the previous season, was slow to come to hand.but on his forth start he was back in the winners enclosure at Catterick, in February 2019, over the extended three miles, the run suggested that now he was approaching the veteran stage,a longer trip may well be required.He followed up at Cartmel in May, and June, with a second, and a forth placing.

He has had five runs this season to date, before things were cut short, his jumping has not been the most fluent at times, but on his latest appearance at Sedgefield in March, from a mark of 124, he was a gallant runner up, a performance probably right up there with his very best.

Justforjames has been a tremendous servant for the yard, and at one stage looked as if he could have gone right to the top. Without the enforced break he would have probably added to his yard tally of four wins, but I feel sure this veteran will be back at Sedgefield again next season.

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01969 625 223     hayley@mickyhammondracing.co.uk

Micky Hammond Racing, Oakwood Stables, Middleham, DL8 4PT.