HAMILTON PARK – Friday July 19th
Going – Good to Firm
Hamilton’s big meeting of the season and very well attended as ever with the glorious summer weather continuing.
6.10 1m Book Now For Ladies Night (Hamilton Park Apprentice Series) Handicap (43-57)
IDYLLIC STAR got off the mark with a comfortable victory from some very moderate opposition. She’s dropped steadily in the handicap and stayed on far too well for the others off a mark of 57. Now she’s got the winning bug she may well be capable of kicking on from here.
Eight years ago this weekend I was on course at Newbury to see TRISKAIDEKAPHOBIA come sixteenth in the Weatherby’s supper sprint. Four employers and four houses later for me, and 79 runs and 10 wins for the gelding, he is now with Wilf Storey and at least competitive even if at a lowly level. He helped set the pace, tried to match the winner but ran out of puff in the final furlong. He did though deservedly hold on to second place.
REMEMBER ROCKY stayed on late but was probably flattered by third.
LIL SOPHELLA chased the first two vainly from three out until weakening in the final furlong.
6.40 6f British Stallion Studs EBF 2yo Maiden (Class 5)
A determined winner in the most experienced runner of the contest DISCLOSURE. He made all the running and kept responding to his rider’s urgings when challenged in the final furlong. He didn’t have all that much to spare, but he certainly shows the right attitude. He may well win again.
OMANOME came clear with the winner, pushing him all the way. She lost her place at the bottom of the hill, but rallied past two others to challenge and looked to have stepped up on previous efforts.
EMAAD was held from two out and didn’t appear to achieve much more than on debut.
CHOOKIE’S LASS went well until weakening a furlong out on her debut. She can step up on this form.
TOOGOODTOBEGOOD was outpaced from halfway.
7.15 6f John Smith’s Extra Smooth Handicap (67-48)
SALVATORE FURY probably isn’t the easiest ride, but he found a straight forward opportunity here. He was held up behind others and squeezed for room two furlongs out, but I suspect the problems helped him and meant his run could be timed conveniently. Once in the clear he picked up nicely and was going away at the post.
TONGALOOMA is well exposed but ran her best race for some while in second.
SAXONETTE won a poor seller here last time, but proved competitive before giving way in the final furlong.
DANCING COSMOS, well held here the previous day, DARK LANE and CARRIE’s MAGIC didn’t provide much encouragement for the near future.
7.45 6f John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup Handicap (78-93)
This year’s renewal of the feature handicap didn’t have the same strength as previous years, but it was a cracking contest with four short heads separating four runners with the fifth not far away.
RODRIGO DE TORRES set the pace on the near side and kept find more as he was challenged in the final two furlongs. He’s not quite been good enough at the top level of handicaps, but this one rung down seems to suit him nicely. He had been campaigned mainly at seven furlongs of late, but his last two races have resulted in fine efforts dropped back to six furlongs.
FAST SHOT gave it his best in the final two furlongs between the winner and Mississippi but was just held.
RASAMAN didn’t look an obvious choice for me toward the bottom of the handicap, but he came with every chance inside the final furlong and just failed. A good effort from one of the senior campaigners in the contest.
AL’S MEMORY raced down the centre and was arguably unlucky since he wouldn’t have seen much of his main opponents. He has been hitting form as the ground has firmed up and may prove one to take forward from this contest given that his placing doesn’t really tell the story.
MISSISSIPPI was run out of it close home having looked sure to be in the first three 50 yards out. He ran a sound race and can gain compensation.
Ten-year-old JOHANNES filled sixth place, held from the furlong pole, while another experienced campaigner MISPLACED FORTUNE was just behind in seventh.
SCOTLAND FOREVER set the early pace on the far side, but weaved about all over the place once the pressure was applied and dropped out form the two furlong pole.
8.15 1m 3f EBF Glasgow Stakes 3yo (Listed)
A rather disappointing turn out of five here from what looked a decent original entry.
MAPUTO justified long odds o by, wearing down stable companion Alta Lilea in the final furlong, the pair clear. An impressive winner of a handicap at Newmarket last week, he is a progressive sort who seems to have enough about him to step up to Group 3. The step up to eleven furlongs was no problem and it wouldn’t surprise me if could make his mark in the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood.
ALTA LILEA set a sensible pace and wound things up in the straight. She responded well once challenged, not going down without a fight. She was second best on the evening but has a likeable attitude and will surely gain compensation. Much depends how the handicapper looks at this race, but she should be capable of winning a decent middle distance handicap in the near future.
MISTER IMPATIENCE, the third of Mark Johnston’s runners, was outpointed from the two furlong marker but kept on well enough to complete the 1-2-3. He’s been knocking on the door in Group 3 and listed events, but might be suited by having a go at a handicap. If it rains in the coming weeks note that his wins have come on soft ground.
CRUCK REALTA was a 20/1 winner of a Listed fillies’ race at Newbury a while back, then outclassed in the Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh. She was comfortably held here in the final two furlongs and on the face of it was below her best.
HOLD THE LINE made some progress three out but couldn’t get in a blow and faded to fifth. He had a tough task here and may be better aimed at handicaps.
8.45 1m 3f John Smith’s 3yo Handicap (30-63)
BEE JAY KAY got the best of a duel in the final two furlongs, with the pair well clear of the remainder. This race didn’t have any great strength in depth but he came away in decent style and might step up to the plate in the next grade up.
RED CHARMER made a fair attempt to follow up the previous day’s win. I thought at first that he may have slightly ducked the issue once challenged, but he was well clear of the third and in retrospect that might be a fairer measure of the form. He’s a nice type and going the right way at his current modest level.
WHITEFALL was readily outpaced in the final two furlongs.
SPATS COLOMBO seemed all at sea on the track down the straight and may be given another chance after this disappointing effort.
9.15 1m 1f Download The Free Racing UK App Handicap (57-72)
WELLINGROVE won this in typical front running Johnston-Fanning style. It’s taken this one a long time to win a race, but put in the right place at the right pace he proved up to the job. He may win again but I’m not sure he will be much value in future as this race was spot on for him.
JANNA’S JINGLE was held up and denied in clear run for some way. Once in the clear two out she picked up nicely but didn’t get to the winner. One of a string brought to the meeting by John Patrick Shanahan; one would think the Irish based trainer should be able to find a race for this one.
TECTONIC chased the winner from three out but was held in the final furlong. He has been steadily progressive this season and should find other opportunities.
EUSTON SQUARE couldn’t make any impact on the leaders in the closing stages. This was his best effort for some time though and he is slipping down the ratings. He may have a chance if dropped to the bottom grade.