My last turf flat meeting of the year which began back in May at Hamilton Park on the bank holiday weekend which included a lovely ride on the beautiful Settle and Carlisle railway as a wonderful prelude to the action over the summer months while the jumpers were having their holidays before coming back to the action.
Seven races on today’s card and amazingly this is Haydock’s only Saturday afternoon flat meeting that does not contain any pattern races but instead it was a couple of 2yo maidens and some tricky looking handicaps for punters to try and decipher during the course of the day.
2.25 The Betfair Supports Pride of Britain Racing Awards E.B.F. Maiden Fillies Stakes,1m 2yo fillies.
An above average looking contest here where experience counted and it was third time lucky here for Flippant under Tom Queally who stayed on stoutly up the run in to fend off Dancing Sands from Godolphin by half a length while early pace setter Testing was back in third.
Hard to know what to make of these as they looked much of a muchness but they are probably not the best juveniles around and some may be better at three.
3.00 The E.B.F. Celebrating The Unsung Heroes of Racing Maiden Stakes,1m 2yo colts and geldings.
A winner for Richard Hannon here as Monsea again showed experience counts with a staying performance to hold off favourite El Najmm back in second and a much improved run by Caridadi in third spot,Beyond Smart was the fourth placed horse on his first start for John Gosden and will have learnt a great deal about the game,he is one to keep an eye on possibly as a 3yo.
The winners looks as though he will improve and could go on to a fair level from this.
3.30 The Betfair Supports Racing Welfare Handicap Stakes,5f 3yo+ (86-105)
A wide open looking contest on paper which went to Demora from the stable of Michael Appleby who recorded his second win of the season after winning at Nottingham in June and seems to be developing ok as a sprinter,Racy back in second went well off a rating of 98 and is still holding his form after being fourth in the Portland maybe York in a few weeks may his next race while Confessional in third showed his liking for this course and will be back next year.
4.05 The Racing Welfare Pride Of Racing Stakes (Handicap) 6f,3yo+ (76-90)
Another typical wide open whose turn is it today sort of race and like Ayr last weekend it was the Andrew Balding yard who took this due to Dungannon under Jimmy Fortune making it two on the bounce following up a recent win at Ascot by 1.25 lengths from Joe Packet who ran his best race for a long time,Favorutie If So was third and looks held by the handicapper at this stage and will probably benefit from a return to the AW at Lingfield where he has a couple of course wins to his name.
Special mention must go to Andrew’s wife Anna-Lisa who hot footed it up here from Chester after picking up the winners prize in the 3.05 race.
4.40 The Jockey Club #PrideofRacing E.B.F. Reprocolor Fillies Handicap Stakes, 1m2f,3yo+ (76-90)
A good looking race on paper will plenty unexposed 3yo fillies and no doubt many looking for good black type in the future and it was Wall of Sound the half sister to The Cheka who made near enough all the running to defeat Cruck Realta by 2.5 lengths with Vicksburg in third and Electra Spectra in third fourth.
Will be interesting to see how the form works out for this race,it’s one I’d keep an eye on for future reference without a doubt.
5.15 The Bet365 Handicap Stakes,1m6f,3yo+ (81-100)
A tough race with most of the field out of form and needing a bit of respite from the handicapper and Swinging Hawk who ran from 2lb out of the handicap stayed on strongly up the straight to beat favourite Suegioo by two lengths and last weeks Ayr runner up Jonny Delta back in third.
Swinging Hawk seems much happier on the flat than he did over hurdles that’s not say he could return over jumps with a rating of 117 should he go in a small 2m4f handicap somewhere.
5.50 The Racing Welfare Handicap Stakes,1m 3yo+ (86-105)
A fine piece of riding by Martin Dwyer on Short Squeeze who dwelt at the start but travelled well down the straight and took the lead with a furlong left and looks a classy horse in the making,he was fancied for the Cambridgeshire but missed the cut and got his compensation here comfortably holding early pace setter Balty Boys by 4.5 lengths and in third was Sandagiyr who ran an ok race but is tricky to place and being 5 his best days with Godolphin are probably behind him now.
Short Squeeze though has a good bit of class about him and will be suited by 1m2f next season but until the Mile division is where he will be kept for the time being.
So another flat season done for me,it’s getting to the time of year where I’m ready for the jumpers to return and a racing free few weeks for the moment before heading down to Cheltenham for the Showcase meeting which promises to be a cracking event to see
Until that I hope to squeeze a couple of football reviews in most likely at non league level which is always a good day out and helps give the smaller clubs a bit of extra publicity and I’m more than happy to do that.
Till the next blog thanks for reading.