In our final blog of the year from Sweden we’ll look back at some of the key performances from the younger horses and speculate who the stars of next year will be and who you should keep an eye out for, both two- and four-legged.
The elite ranks have been a bit thin on the ground this year, so therefore I think we’ll find the most interesting horses from the four-year-olds who have impressed during the year.
The two that I think will blossom into world stars in years to come are Ecurie D, a horse who I have mentioned quite a bit on this blog over the last two months, and Hail Mary.
The latter took 12 victories in all this year, more than any other horse. He also won the Swedish Trotting Derby, the most prestigious prize for younger horses.
My feeling is that he is going to have a very fruitful 2021.
Other horses to watch out for from the age group include Don Fanuci Zet, Aetos Kronos and Power, all horses who I think have the potential to challenge the best.
Among the four-year-old mares, Diana Zet has been the best during the year, winning the StoChampionatet and Stallion Derby. However we won’t see her on the race track next year as she, and many other good mares will now head to the breeding sheds.
Brambling, trained by Daniel Reden, won the biggest race for three-year-olds this year, the Criterium. However, there are others who have impressed me more.
San Moteur is one in particular who I like. Despite not winning the final of any of the major races, he showed the qualities needed to rise to the top of the division.
Other nice three-year-olds we can look forward to in 2021 are Mister Hercules, Hell Bent For Am and the luckless Selected News who saw nothing go right for him this year.
Familiar faces take the top prizes
From four legs to two, and among the drivers it was Ulf Ohlsson who claimed the most wins in the sulky this season, but he once again had to play second fiddle to Örjan Kihlström many times, as he took a number of the biggest races.
Björn Goop is another who can be relied on in the major events and showed that again in 2020. He’s also in the lucky spot that he is the driver for both Face Time Bourbon and Ecurie D, perhaps the two best horses in Europe.
Then we have two young brothers Mats and Magnus Djuse who in two years have taken a big step towards the best this year and are the future of the sport.
Positive year for Swedish trotting
The great success of equestrian sports in Sweden and around the world in a year that has otherwise been very difficult is that many new people have discovered that there is pleasure to be had from watching and betting on the horse racing.
And on that note, I will, as usual, end with my best bet of the week.
We haven’t been able to find any winning big dividends recently, but I’m hoping to find a good winner on Saturday. Gina Mearas carries the number three in the 11th race (17:42) on the card at Halmstad.
Trained by Johan Untersteiner, he has been handed a good number to start from and can get himself into a good position to win from.
Good luck if you decide to follow my selection, and most importantly, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all!