The opening meeting of the 2017 flat season in the north west and at Haydock Park brought a hat trick up for local trainer Tom Dascombe as himself and stable owner Michael Owner went back home to their Malpas base with huge smiles on their respective faces.
First up came in the first race when La Celebs Ville finally broker her maiden in tag in the opening 1m handicap (0-70) by half a length from Whitkirk, she had to dig in for this and can pick up some more races in this grade.
Team Dascombe then came up good in the last two races on the card when Sidewinder made sure his owners The Sidewinder Partnership did sleep tonight as he like the opening race winner broke his maiden tag in the 3yo handicap over 1m (0-75), back on the green stuff today he responded well to Richard Kingscote to get the verdict over Know Your Limit,the step up to a mile suited and he reportedly heads to Chester in a couple of weeks time, The third winner came in the finale when Caponova readily scored in the 1m2f handicap (0-80) to record a fourth course and distance win, going in off 75 he should get upped about 5lbs after this but won like a horse ahead of his mark.
The afternoons feature race a Class 2 7f handicap saw the £28k or so first prize get taken by Frankie Dettori who paid a flying visit for two rides and bagged this one under Afjaan for trainer William Haggis and owners Al Shaqab Racing as this lightly 5yo scored very readily here, possible targets include the Victoria Cup at Ascot in a fortnight but the one thing against him is that all of his three wins have been on tracks with a turning 7f so one possibility could be to come back here for the Spring Trophy on the same day.
Josephine Gordon,last seasons champion apprentice jockey got a very nice ride off evergreen 7yo Quixote from David Loughrane’s stable as he bolted up in the Class 2, 1m handicap, going through the gears in the last furlong he was over three lengths ahead from Early Morning,on his last run Quixote got left in the stalls at Southwell and that looked to have been a blessing now as the handicapper dropped him 1lb for that, The Royal Hunt Cup is a potential target and he could well make the cut for it.
Godolphin unveiled a potential Derby horse in Maghfoor who finally broke his duck on his third start for Saeed Bin Suroor under last seasons champion flat jockey Jim Crowley in the 1m4f maiden for 3yo, he easily held off debutant Humble Hero from the Haggis stable by three quarters of a length, wether the Derby entry is an optimistic one we will only know should he go for a trial race, the one at Lingfield could suit this horse a lot better than the Dante off this run.
Finally Downton Kitten picked up an ordinary looking EBF Fillies Maiden over 1m under the steerage of Tom Queally for David Lanigan, getting the better over the more experienced Beyond Recall she should make into a solid enough filly and will have learnt plenty from this too.
A welcome return to the flat after being NH focused since October, next Saturday we are off to Yorkshire for the tricky to pronounce Thirsk Hunt Cup meeting.
Beyond Recall,3yo filly trained by Luca Cumani she was runner up in the 1m fillies’ maiden and is now qualified for handicaps after this run.
Fawaareq,4yo clue from Owen Burrows, 3rd in the feature 7f race will be much better when upped back trip to a mile