Ante-post Grand National favourite,Ballabriggs, continued his preparation for the Aintree marathon by winning a novice hurdle at Ayr on Monday.
Donald McCain’s ten-year-old won a similar contest at Wincanton three weeks ago, but is set to switch back to fences after the weights for Aintree are released next month.
Sent off the 11-10 favourite, Ballabriggs, beat Yes Tom and Kings Grey with the minimum of fuss under Jason Maguire.
Owner,Trevor Hemmings’ racing manager,Mick Meagher was pleased with the performance:
“He’s not bad for a ten-year-old over hurdles and is not short of speed.
“Jason was delighted with the way he travelled. He’ll have one more run over fences – either a conditions chase at Kelso or the Grimthorpe Chase at Doncaster [both on Saturday, March 5] – and then he’ll go to Aintree.”
McCain added: “I was very pleased with him. We’ll get him back over fences now.”
Ballabriggs was unbeaten over fences last year, including a win in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup at the Cheltenham Festival.