Oscar Rock to adopt new tactics

Last Updated: 10/12/13 1:42pm

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Oscar Rock: Will adopt new tactics

Oscar Rock: Will adopt new tactics

Sky Bet

Oscar Rock is likely to be ridden more positively when he makes his next appearance in the Betfred Mobile Sports Challow Novices' Hurdle at Newbury on December 28.

Trainer Malcolm Jefferson felt he got caught a little flat footed by the smart Ballyalton at Newcastle and is keen for the same thing not to happen in future.

Jefferson compared him favourably to Dato Star, who won a Christmas Hurdle and a Fighting Fifth, as well as the Champion Bumper for the Malton handler.

"I think there were a couple of reasons he lost. The ground was faster than he likes, they didn't get the rain they expected and it was on the quicker side of good, and I think Brian (Hughes) could have made more use of him and kicked on down the back when the pace slowed," said Jefferson.

"He's very much like Dato Star in that he doesn't really quicken, he's just a galloper - you need to get out and jump with him. I know one was a two-miler and one wants further, but they are the same type in that they have a very high cruising speed.

"If a horse can go along with him at his pace, then it is a very fair sort. The winner is decent though, make no mistake. They mentioned the Challow and that is where we'll be going, so we might bump into him again. We'd need good to soft ground at least."

Jefferson has a nice novice chaser on his hands in the shape of Hi George, who beat Pertemps Final winner Holywell on his chasing debut at Catterick.

"He's a brilliant jumper and loves good ground, but he's a bit bigger than his half-brother Attaglance," said Jefferson.

"I've always liked him and I suppose it depends what the handicapper does. He was only 119 over hurdles so we'll see. He needs good ground and to go left-handed so Catterick or Doncaster are the right tracks for him."

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