Rookie trainer Harry Fry is in bullish mood as he prepares his stable star Rock On Ruby for a defence of his Stan James Champion Hurdler crown at the Cheltenham Festival next month.
The Dorset based handler is thrilled with the way the reigning champion has come out of his victory over Countrywide Flame at Doncaster last month, in a race which was marred by the fatal fall of Darlan. The latter had been seen as a real threat to the Fry inmate, and looked to be travelling marginally the better, when coming down at the final flight.
“He’s come out of the Doncaster race as well as we could have hoped for and it’s taken him to the next level. We’ve got the chance to put the finishing touches on him now. We’ve got just over three weeks and it’s very much all systems go So we’re very confident and if it continues to dry we’ll be growing more confident by the day.”
Fry, oversaw the preparation of Rock On Ruby for last seasons race, although the horse ran under the care of Paul Nicholls. The champion trainer was quick to acknowledge that his assistant had been responsible for the success, and the latter has been rewarded as owner Paul Barber sent the horse to Fry, when he branched out in his own at the start of the new season.