Joe Tizzard
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Joe Tizzard: “Royal Vacation should run really well.”

| 07.12.2018

The latest insight from the Tizzard stables 

We were thrilled last weekend to win the Ladbrokes Trophy with Sizing Tennessee.

We were lucky enough to win The Hennessy as it was then with Native River two years ago, and to win it again, and also have Elegant Escape finish second and West Approach fifth, was fantastic.

The Ladbrokes Trophy is one of the big races in the jumping calendar, and these are the races we want to be winning.

Sizing Tennessee and Elegant Escape

Both Sizing Tennessee and Elegant Escape look like contenders for the Coral Welsh Grand National.

Sizing Tennessee is also entered for the King George too so we haven’t made any firm plans, but he has been out up 12lbs by the handicapper, so will be 7lbs well in with a 5lb penalty at Chepstow.

He jumped and stayed brilliantly at Newbury so he looks a Welsh National type. But so does Elegant Escape, who got a bit outpaced on Saturday and then stayed on really well to finish second.

He’s been raised 4lbs for that effort. Both Sizing Tennessee and Elegant Escape will be running in all the big staying handicap chases.

West Approach

It was great to see West Approach run so well after he’d disappointed at Cheltenham the previous time, and his owners John and Heather Snook were really pleased with him.

We’re likely to go back to hurdles for the Long Walk at Ascot next with him.


Lostintranslation was running a lovely race until he made that race-ending mistake.

And that’s why we like running our novice chasers to get them plenty of experience and he’ll learn from that mistake. He’s fine and will likely head to the Dipper Chase at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day.

Kilbricken Storm

Kilbricken Storm was disappointing, but we had him checked out and he’s got a fracture in his pelvis, so he’ll have a month’s box rest.

Vision Des Flos

Vision Des Flos took on Buveur D’Air and Samcro at Newcastle and he didn’t disgrace himself but it proved that he’s not a Champion Hurdle horse.

It’s not too late to go back novice chasing with him. Black Op is only having his first run over fences today and our horse has already had a run over fences and he was just unlucky to stumble and lose Scu.

I’m sure we will go back chasing and we still have time to get two or three runs in to him before the Festivals.

Saturday – Aintree

11.55 – Eldorado Allen

We’re trying to play steady with him and we are working backwards from the Tolworth. That will be his first graded race on the 5th January so this race fits nicely with that timetable.

It looks a lovely race for him and it should be run at a good pace as the Ian Williams’ trained horse Cause Toujours goes a good gallop. It’s a good next step for him as his form has worked out really well. We are very excited about running him.

1.30 – Ultragold

This is the furthest he’s run over and it’s soft ground but we’re not afraid of that as we are aiming to have a crack at the Grand National.

His record over these fences is exceptional as he’s won twice and been second. We are looking forward to running him.

We always thought he was going to be a three miler. He’s bred to stay this trip and I think with age he will.

He’s such a smooth jumper over these big fences, he gives himself much more chance to stay.

He led all the way in the Topham over 2m 5f and because he can give himself breathers and get into a lovely rhythm, he’s only really in second gear all the way, so gives himself a massive chance to get this trip.

It’s not the Grand National tomorrow, so even if he gets beaten it but runs well then that will be fine.

3.15 – Shanahan’s Turn

He would probably want better ground, but he came second in the Topham and that counts for a lot. Trip-wise it’s perfect for him. He’ll certainly be heading back to the Topham later in the season. He deserves to run in this.


1.50 – Pingshou

He ran a nice race at Cheltenham. He’d been off the course a long time and was a bit gassy for the first mile, but he still travelled really well until he got a bit tired late on.

I thought Lalor was extremely impressive but our horse is a good horse and I hope that the uphill climb after the start at Sandown will take the freshness out of him.

We just want to get the runs into him. He missed a year and he’s good enough to be competitive in these races and we are looking forward to running him. He is a good horse.

3.35 – Royal Vacation

He struggled last year but he bounced back beautifully with a lovely run at Cheltenham last time out, without any of the headgear on.

He’s the sort of horse that travels behind the bridle and only does as much as you ask of him. I think this 3m 5f will suit him down to the ground.

We found this race after his last run and it’s always been the target for him. He should run really well.


1.25 – Ruffling Feathers

He had his first run at Plumpton and that went fine, but he’s a baby that’s just learning his job. I’m sure 2m3f around Chepstow will suit him better.

It won’t be long before he starts winning but he may be the type of horse who’ll get a handicap mark first.

1.55 – Mount Rushmore

He ran in Irish Point to Points and he’s schooled well at home so he’s a horse we’ve been looking forward to getting over fences.

Hopefully over fences around Chepstow should suit him. He’s got nice form over hurdles especially that second at Exeter behind Golden Sunrise.

We’re expecting him to run a big race, but we are hoping the fences will wake him up a bit as we were disappointed with the way he didn’t travel at Uttoxeter last time.

Battle of Ideas – runs next week at Taunton on Thursday

We made an entry for Taunton next Thursday over 2m 7f. I think that will suit him down to the ground. He made those mistakes at Chepstow last time so we didn’t find out if he really stayed the trip.

So this race at Taunton should be ideal. He looks superb, and is fit and well from his run. He schooled well this week and we will school him again on Monday or Tuesday just to make sure he’s ready.

The handicapper dropped him again and he’s capable of winning on Thursday.




Joe Tizzard

Former Jump jockey Joe Tizzard enjoyed a stellar career in the saddle, with his record 91 wins to claim the 1998-99 champion conditional title gaining him prominence. Tizzard’s first Cheltenham Festival successes came during that period, including an Arkle win onboard the Paul Nicholls trained Flagship Uberalles. However, it was his Grade 1 victories in partnership with Cue Card, trained by dad Colin, which really catapulted Joe into the big time. Now assistant trainer to his father the Tizzards’ Dorset yard is home to some of the most exciting horses in training, including Cue Card, Thistlecrack and Native River. You can read Joe’s thoughts and get exclusive insight at throughout the 2019-20 season.