Tom Cannon Excited for Reunion with Edwardstone at Cheltenham
Rider Tom Cannon is eagerly awaiting his reunion with the talented racehorse Edwardstone as they make their seasonal reappearance in the prestigious Shloer Chase at Cheltenham on Sunday. The pair shares a strong bond, having celebrated many memorable victories together, including their dominant performance in the Arkle at the esteemed Cheltenham Festival of 2022.
Last season was also successful for them, securing another Grade One triumph in the Tingle Creek and narrowly missing out on victory by just a head in the Clarence House race held in January.
Their journey hit a stumbling block during the Queen Mother Champion Chase at last year’s Cheltenham Festival when Edwardstone delivered an uncharacteristic performance. However, Cannon remains optimistic about their upcoming return to this iconic track, choosing to overlook that disappointing run.
Cannon expressed his satisfaction with Edwardstone’s current form: “Edwardstone has been performing well during our training sessions. I schooled him on Monday and gave him another session last week. He feels fresh and full of energy, which fills me with excitement ahead of Sunday.”
The jockey recognizes that competing against top-level talent means no easy races for their duo now. Originally meant to participate in last season’s Shloer Chase but skipping it due to unfavorable ground conditions back then, Edwardstone showcased his ability by winning first time out last season – demonstrating readiness once again this year.
Reflecting on the horse’s character, Cannon admires Edwardstone: “He is not just a tremendous horse to ride but also a magnificent creature to behold. Despite his imposing presence, he possesses all the power required in the right places – like riding into battle.”
The Shloer Chase covers a familiar distance of two miles, which aligns with Edwardstone’s usual trip. However, discussions are ongoing about potentially stepping up in distance later this season. Cannon believes that this particular race will provide valuable insights when deciding on future plans.
Cannon explains how Edwardstone’s pedigree suggests potential success over longer distances: “His breeding indicates an aptitude for greater endurance; moreover, he has previously performed well beyond two miles during hurdle races. While displaying impressive speed as demonstrated during last year’s Tingle Creek victory, it remains to be seen if he can maintain consistent performance after that.”
The jockey hints at future possibilities: “As Edwardstone matures and younger horses emerge onto the scene, exploring longer distances may open up new options for us. This race serves as an opportunity to test his capabilities while providing us with insights into our plans for the rest of the season.”