Ruth Jefferson has vowed not to run Waiting Patiently unless the ground is soft after her stable star was denied back-to-back victories in the Betfair Ascot Chase at the Berkshire track on Saturday.
While taking nothing from winner Cyrname, who set a new course record, Jefferson felt Waiting Patiently was never “comfortable” on the surface.
“The conditions weren’t what I would call perfect (for him) yesterday and we let him take his chance. I don’t think I’d let him take his chance again on that ground,” the Malton trainer told Racing TV’s Luck on Sunday programme.
“It was a lot quicker than we have run him on. Thankfully he is all right this morning.
“At times he didn’t look entirely comfortable, but I’m not going to use that as an excuse. I think he ran his race.
“He’s a horse that is better on softer ground because he handles it better than some other horses handle soft, heavy ground.
“I certainly feel getting beat doesn’t suddenly make him not a good horse. I think he’s a very good horse.”
Conditions will be at the forefront of Jefferson’s mind when she plans Waiting Patiently’s next race.
“He’s in the Ryanair and there’s Aintree and Punchestown,” she said.
“We would need a soft going description. I wouldn’t take too many chances on ground as quick as that.”
Waiting Patiently had only got as far as the ninth fence in the King George VI Chase when unseating his rider after being badly hampered, on what his first race since his Grade One success at Ascot last February.
It was his first try over three miles at Kempton and Jefferson is in two minds whether to have another go.
“It’s hard to say. We tried three miles in the King George, but he didn’t get far enough. You couldn’t say on yesterday’s race he wants three miles,” she said.
“We’ll go away and think about it. There are races there.
“I’m not going to rule it out. Definitely not, but it’s difficult to say after yesterday. You wouldn’t say he was crying out for a step up in trip.
“Last year he handled that trip (at Ascot) beautifully, but it was his first race of the season really yesterday. Things have been different this year.”