John Constable sparks Galway Hurdle thoughts with Summer special at Market Rasen
John Constable could head to Ireland for the Galway Hurdle after defying a 16lb rise in the weights with an emphatic victory in the Betfred TV Summer Handicap Hurdle at Market Rasen.
Trainer Evan Williams is tempted to look at the highly-competitive and very valuable handicap after the six-year-old backed up his Swinton Hurdle success at Haydock in May in some style.
Irish-based jockey Davy Russell, making his first appearance at the Lincolnshire course for many years, kept John Constable towards the rear before unleashing the 4-1 favourite in the straight.
Leading at the final flight, John Constable got home two and a half lengths clear of last year's winner Red Tornado, with a further two lengths away to Kapstadt in third.
Williams believes the reason for John Constable's improved form is his liking for the warmer weather.
"He's a different horse. He's by Montjeu and they can be tricky. He was always a good horse in hiding, but we could never get him to win," said the Llancarfan trainer.
"He came to life before the Swinton. I wanted to go Royal Ascot with him for the two-mile handicap, but he got balloted out. Then the Flat programme frightened me a bit, so I thought we'd come here.
"He's entered in the Galway Hurdle. I will have to see how he is.
"It's good we've had a warm spring and summer. He loves the sun on his back.
"He's a very good horse when conditions are right and he's in the right frame of mind."
Russell said: "I rode a couple of winners here some years ago. This horse is good when conditions are right.
"I don't know about the Galway Hurdle. There's the travelling over and it's a week on Thursday, so we'll have to see how he is.
"The race might suit him if he's in the best of health, but it's a very competitive race."