Overturn brushes through the top of a fence in a neat chasing debutPICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)
Overturn foot-perfect in classy chase debut
Report: Sandown, Saturday
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IN RECENT weeks Donald McCain had spoken about how nervous he was about the prospect of Overturn making his debut over fences. He needn't have sweated, because his fleet-footed star was foot-perfect as he cruised to victory at Sandown.
On his long-awaited first chasing run, Overturn streaked clear of his three out-classed rivals and turned the race into a full-speed schooling session. He came through the test with flying colours.
Over the fences, Overturn was fluent, quick and snappy. There was not a single error or nervous moment, and even the railway fences down the back with negotiated with a breezy confidence.
On this basis McCain's brilliant hurdler has a bright future over fences, and William Hill moved quickly to cut the eight-year-old to 10-1 (from 12) for the Arkle, while Betfred went 8-1 (from 12).
McCain said: "He was brilliant. When one's as good as he is you do worry, and under the new rules it's been very hard to find the right race. He's been ready to go a couple of times, and I'm just relieved it's over.
"He had a look at one or two but he didn't put a foot wrong and when Jason [Maguire] put a gun to his head he had loads of scope. I was pleased he had a bit of a look and thought about it. To jump this place like that was special. He had it all his own way but that was magic. He's a special little horse.
"I was very worried about the [good to soft] ground and panicked a bit. Jason walked the course and he was worried. I walked the course and I was worried. But it was difficult to pass up a four-runner novice."
McCain added: "I haven't had a look beyond today, but we are obviously talking about the very best two-mile novices. I should think we'll go again fairly soon and then back off until the spring."