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Nawton handler celebrates memorable Ebor Festival double
DAVID O’MEARA is the man who just can’t stop winning at York Racecourse.
The Nawton trainer, having a standout season from his Arthington Barn Stables base, notched his eighth and ninth winners of the Knavesmire campaign when Mont Ras produced an impressive display of front-running to make all in the Clipper Logistic Stakes and Dutch Rose (8-1) won the closing eventmasters.co.uk EBF Fillies’ Stakes.
Mont Ras’ victory was the six-year-old’s fourth win of the season, following a double triumph at Haydock and success at Redcar, but, despite his fine form, he was still a 25-1 surprise in the mile-long £75,000 contest.
Jockey David Bergin cleverly controlled the pace of the contest from the front, however, and, when he struck for home in earnest with about three-and-a-half furlongs left to travel, he immediately had many of his rivals struggling to hang on to his coat-tails.
It proved a forlorn task for the rest of the field as Mont Ras stuck his head down and repelled the chasing Windhoek to win by a length.
O’Meara said: “We were concerned about his wide draw but he loves fast ground. He broke sharply and was left alone in front so probably got the run of the race.
“He got a good sensible ride from the jockey, who will be delighted – the whole team will be delighted. Mont Ras has been in good form this year but this was his highest ever mark so his price possibly reflected that.”
Dutch Rose, meanwhile, an 8-1 chance, surged late on in the final fillies’ race to beat Indignant by a neck.
“We’ll keep trying,” O’Meara added on the prospect of becoming York’s top trainer for the first time come the end of the season in October. “Richard Fahey has a knack of producing loads of winners. We’ll see how it goes and enjoy it while it lasts.”
Trainer George Margarson is convinced Lucky Kristale will see out a mile in next year’s 1,000 Guineas and says it is full steam ahead for Classic glory.
The three-year-old produced a sumptuous performance to win the Connolly’s Red Mills Lowther Stakes and advertise her claims for Newmarket glory next spring.
Tom Queally steered the juvenile filly out to the stands’ side rail, having had much of the field ahead of him at the two-furlong marker, and his mount flew home to beat Queen Catrine by a length and a half.
Margarson said: “She’s going to go straight to the Cheveley Park and then we’ll think about next year. Now we have got Kiyoshi to scalp. No doubt we won’t meet her again until the Guineas.
“This was the first time she’s convinced me she will get the Guineas trip. It’s taken Tom until half way up the back straight before he could pull her up.”
Queally added: “She worked very well during the week and she is very good. She is going places in a hurry.”
Haikbidiac (9-1) landed jockey Liam Jones a huge pay day when winning the opening £315,000 DBS Premier Yearling Stakes for Skipton-born trainer William Haggas.
The rider was the only one to hug the stands’ side rail and the two-year-old was two lengths too good for Thunder Strike and Nezar.
With connections taking a first prize of £154,769, a delighted Jones, celebrating the most valuable race victory of his career, said: “They went a nice pace. I was on the stands’ side on my own and when I asked him to pick up he kept flying home. He stuck his head down and galloped to the line.”
Haggas later claimed a double, and his seventh win of the York year, when 3-1 favourite Our Obsession won the Listed ‘Breeders Backing Racing’ EBF Galtres Fillies’ Stakes.
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