Just as Lucy Wadham predicted, Potters Legend proved himself to be a decent each-way contender at last week’s Cheltenham Festival.
The Bury Road-based trainer opted to go down the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Chase route with the seven-year-old last Wednesday— a decision made largely down to the unusually dry ground at the Gloucestershire track.
A mistake at the third fence from home ultimately ended any chances of victory, but the horse — with Michael Legg on board — made up some yards in the closing stages to eventually finish fourth.
“I am was very happy with the run,” said Wadham.
“The mistake hit him hard and he had to use a lot to get back in because a few lengths were lost.
“But his reaction was great. Other horses might have thought ‘no thank you’ after a mistake like that but he got on with it.”
She continued: “He has only been racing the last 18 months but has come such a long way since then.
“He is usually a safe jumper and nimble, which he showed at Cheltenham by dodging some of the fallers.
“There is obviously a long way to go, but in the next couple of years I can see him becoming a National horse.”
For now, Potters Legend will either head up to Ayr next month for The Coral Scottish Grand National Meeting or travel across for the Punchestown Festival (April 25-29).
n The result at Cheltenham was not so favourable for My Mate Mark, who came home 19th from a field of 22 in the Champion Bumper.
The ground was ultimately too quick for the four-year-old, but trainer Martin Smith — on his first assignment at the Festival — has reflected positively on the experience.
“Overall it was fantastic to be involved for our whole yard,” he said.
“Nature was not too kind to us but the horse still gave it everything and he has a really bright future. I said to my wife Michelle afterwards that now we have been here, we need to make sure we come back and have a really good go at one of the races.
“We have got that first experience out of the way and I think you need that. You are more used to it the second time round and things are a little easier.”
My Mate Mark will now be given a break, with a likely return to action in November.