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Impervious & Mr Incredible Prove Their Top Table Credentials

Brian Hayes for Bookies.com

Brian Hayes  | 4 mins

Impervious & Mr Incredible Prove Their Top Table Credentials

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It was great to be in the winner’s enclosure at the weekend with Impervious, and it was nice to do it for our new owner JP McManus.

What a mare she is, and everyone associated with her should be extremely excited about her future. On Saturday, I was thrilled with the effort from Mr Incredible at Warwick as well.

Overall, it was a good weekend!

Mr Incredibly Eyecatching

On Saturday, I went to Warwick to ride Mr Incredible, and I was delighted with his effort. I was looking forward to riding him at Christmas in the Paddy Power at Leopardstown, but unfortunately he was brought down early in the contest. His owner, Paul Byrne, had a plan after the race and the Classic Chase was the next port of call.

He’s a tricky customer who has refused to race in the past, but he is starting to come together now. Patrick Mullins has put in an awful lot of work with him and has sweetened him up over the past while.

He was slowly away in this race, which was an issue, as in England it doesn’t matter what trip or ground it is, they always go a strong gallop early on, but thankfully when they steadied up a bit, he latched on to the back of the main group and travelled nicely from there. 

The winner did it well in the end, but we were staying on powerfully, and he should improve a good bit for it. I was impressed by his stamina, and if he can stay as sweet as he currently is, then he should go close in a big handicap. He was given a mark of 145 after the race, and it appears that the Kim Muir at Cheltenham and the Aintree Grand National are on his agenda. He should go very well in both if he brings his 'A' game.

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Impervious Brilliant Again

Impervious was brilliant on her first two starts this season, and she improved yet again on Sunday at Punchestown. She is very exciting for Colm Murphy.

In a Grade 1, she would have been getting seven pounds from the geldings, but in that Grade 3, she actually gave each of them a pound. To win as she did under those conditions would really excite everyone associated with her.

Apart from early on, where she was maybe travelling a bit too well, I was delighted with her through every section of the race, and her jumping improved once again. She is a very clever horse, so even if she does get in a bit tight to one, she easily sorts herself out. She is just so quick away from the back of a fence. 

She is getting better with every run, and we really don’t have any idea of how good she actually is.

Her gears are another facet of her that always impresses me. Similar to Cork, turning in, I was flat out for a few strides, but then she just seems to hit a higher gear and go easily again.

Once we hit that top gear, I felt like we were going so well that I only rode her hands and heels to the finish. Turning in, I was very confident that I was going to win as we were going so easily, but in fairness to Journey With Me and Rachael (Blackmore), they really battled well to go down by less than a length. The fact that we pulled 22 lengths clear of the third horse shows the quality of the first two home. 

Impervious is becoming very relaxed in herself, and seems to know what the game is all about. She is getting better with every run. The sky is the limit as to what she can achieve, and she is a real credit to the Colm Murphy yard, who have always held her in such high esteem. I’ve no doubt she’ll prove a great acquisition for JP McManus.

You would like to think Impervious will be right up there with the best mares around and go to Cheltenham with a live chance.

The Weekend Ahead

Weather permitting, at the weekend I am heading to Taunton for Shark Hanlon, and I am looking forward to getting back on Cape Gentleman, who I know well from his time with Emmett Mullins. The plan is the Grand National at Aintree so we need to finish in the first four. We should be able to go very well in that contest and progress as the season goes on.

The plan now also is that I’ll ride Take All in the 'Seniors' handicap hurdle at Taunton on the same day. That race is for horses eight years old and higher which is a very interesting idea, and he could go very well on his first ride for the yard since joining from Seamus Fahey. He was just over six lengths behind in the Paddy Power at Christmas, and if he can translate that form back to hurdles again he should run a big race.

About the Author

Brian Hayes for Bookies.com
Brian Hayes
Brian Hayes is a leading Irish jockey based with the Willie Mullins yard and regular rider at all the big national hunt racing festivals including Galway, Punchestown Aintree and Cheltenham. The Cork native has ridden high in the riding ranks despite not hailing from a racing background and quickly becoming a relied on partner for some of the best horses in top training yards.