Entered last year by trainer Venetia Williams, Katenko was subsequently withdrawn due to injury but at eight years old is back again for another shot at making the final line-up for the 2014 Crabbies Grand National.
A very experienced horse for his age, Katenko has had 18 chase starts claiming five wins and three places and has earned connections in excess of £300K during his career.
He spent the first few years of his racing career in France and moved over to run in the UK back in November of 2012 and has done well for Williams winning at Sandown, and Cheltenham.
He made his seasonal return in November in the Hennessy Gold Cup but unfortunately fell with jockey Aidan Coleman on board but bounced back in his next three races, placing fourth at Aintree, fourth at Haydock and third at Newbury on February 8th 2014 before failing to show in the Cheltenham Gold Cup where he finished in 11th spot.
While he looks like a decent prospect, there are a few issues with him not least of which is the fact that he’s only 8 years old which has hampered younger horses in the past. In fact, only one 8 year old has won the Grand National in the last 20 years and that was Bindaree in 2002.
Another doubt is his ability to travel well on faster ground and a quick look at the statistics shows that the bulk of his runs and wins/places have come on heavy ground and given that the going at Aintree is unlikely to be that soft, it may pose him more than a few problems.
He was given 11-04 for the 2014 National and did run at Cheltenham in the Gold Cup but at the five day declaration stage, Katenko was withdrawn from the 2014 Crabbies Grand National.