Beautiful summer sunshine shone on Haydock Park for a top quality card of flat racing, despite being wedged inbetween Glorious Goodwood and the York Ebor meetings some nice potential future types were on show for a bumper crowd to enjoy.
Sports wise this was a huge weekend that began with England taking the Ashes plus the first weekend of the new football season so their was something for everybody to enjoy.
Today’s feature race was the Group Three Rose Of Lancaster with a nice Listed race and some competitive handicaps for the punters to solve or to just relax and enjoy.
1.50 Betfred Duke Of Lancaster’s Own Yeomanry Handicap Stakes,Class 3,1m,3yo+ (0-95) (London Mile Series Qualifier)
A competing race but largely one sided at the business end with Early Morning from Harry Dunlop under the steering of Phillip Makin running out a ready winner here off a mark of 89 he was in command with two furlongs to go and only having his seventh career start this 4yo is still unexposed, he could go for the final at Kempton and is worth noting down.
Runner up was bottom weight Manchestar who stayed on well from the pack,he’s still on a career high mark while Balducci in third always runs well here and could be back here at the September meetings.
2.20 Betfred Goals Galore Handicap Stakes,Class 2,1m2f,3yo+ (0-105)
A top quality race here full of in form types,exposed types and horses on retrieval missions.
Rembrandt Van Rijn made it four from four this season under George Baker for trainer David Lanigan, following in from wins at Wolverhampton,Chester and Sandown he is in the form of his life and took this valuable event to win in the style of a good horse, held up early he made his way down the outside of the field and got the lead from The Character in the last half furlong to score by a couple of lengths.
His winning mark of 96 is going to go into three digits now and has begun to hit top form, he could go to York for the Strensall Stakes in a fortnight but a crack at the Cambridgshire could be ideal given his running style.
The Character could have a race in him somewhere, The two 3yo in the race Festive Fare and Basateen came fourth and fifth, Festive Fare has winning form on the AW and may do better back on that surface and Basateen was running on towards the end and a step up on trip could suit him.
2.55 Betfred Rose Of Lancaster Stakes,Group 3,1m2f,3yo+
This race all revolved around one horse, Intilaaq from Roger Varian who like his predecessor the late Michael Jarvis always enjoyed having winners at Haydock.
Intilaaq did what he had to do, a winner of a Newbury maiden in April he was down the field in the 2000 Guineas and looks much better now up in trip, he was kept up to his work and held last months John Smiths Cup winner Master Carpenter by five lengths.
He holds entries in the top 10-12f races but he looks the type to be even better next season and is bred to stay 1m4f.
Master Carpenter ran a sound race in defeat as did Fire Fighting who runs almost every other weekend.
3.25 Betfred TV/EBF Stallions Dick Hern Fillies Stakes,Listed,1m,3yo+ fillies and mares.
Realtra made a winning debut for trainer Roger Varian to give him a double on the day although she had to work hard for it in what looked a competitive and trappy race on paper.
Just leading in the last fifty yards she just held on from the staying on 100-1 outsider of the field Wiener Valkyrie who very nearly caused a huge upset, back in third was Crowley’s Law who ran her usual consistent race.
Realtra was formerly trained by Richard Fahey and Roger Varian looks to have brought her back to her old self and will no doubt try to add to this win before her eventual paddock career.
Wiener Valkyrie ran a real PB of 75,hopefully the handicapper won’t overreact to this but she does have some valuable black type now.
Roxy Star came into this race unbeaten,she didn’t break well and was always struggling,she can be forgiven for this but may now end up in the “Expensive to follow” club
4.00 Betfred ‘Goals Galore Extra’ Levy Board Handicap Stakes,Class 2,1m4f,3yo
Hats off to a Royal winner here as jockey Graham Gibbons donned the famous colours on the Sir Michael Stoute trained Mustard.
Mustard was stepping up in trip here after being placed over 10f this term and he really did cut the mustard over 12f and relished the step up in distance, in mid div throughout the contest he had to play ketchup to the leaders down the straight but made up the ground and has more to offer over this sort of trip.
Captain Navarre was half a length down in second,he remains a maiden after eleven races but ran a sound race, Putting Green in third was a bit one paced but stayed on well.
As for Mustard it’s possible the Melrose could be on the shortlist but he has plenty to offer now at this distance,he is 2/2 at Haydock
4.35 Betfred Supports Jack Berry House Handicap Stakes,Class 4,6f,3yo+ (0-85)
Just a neck separated the first two here as Speedy Move lived up to his name and dug a little more to find out to hold off Nezar, the par were nicely ahead from Secret Asset and Belvoir Diva.
Speedy Move ran his best race of the season here,winner of a couple of races as a 2yo he is better in the second half of the season as he was last year,Nezar still hasn’t won since two but he is slowly getting their.
The eyecatcher was Belvoir Diva in fourth,making her fourth start she is still unexposed and should get some nice races soon
5.05 Betfred ‘Play Your Way’ Handicap Stakes,Class 5,5f,3yo+ (0-70)
Compton Heights followed up last months Ayr win with considerable ease here,despite the possibility of the ‘bounce factor’ he travelled well and quickened up nicely under Phillip Makin for Keith Dalglish to give bottom horse Ryan Style a 3.25 length beating.
The winner looks happy at either 5 or 6f,a two time winner at Ayr he would need to go up a lot to make the cut for any of the Ayr metallic cup races but he is in bang on form so could turn up next month providing he picks more raced up.
Veteran Ryan Style hasn’t won since 2011,he has been running well in defeat though.
So a nice afternoons racing then.
Star attraction was without a doubt Intilaaq who looks a class act in the making.
Next racing review will be the Ebor from York,in the meantime before that it’s possible that the first of our football reviews of the season will be occurring from the North West Counties Leagues.
Till then thank you for reading.