Thursday, July 25, 2002
LATEST TOTE ANTE-POST PRICES
KING GEORGE VI & QUEEN ELIZABETH DIAMOND STAKES (ASCOT, SATURDAY)
Evens Grandera, 2 Sakhee (with a run), 6 Golan, 7 Nayef, Zindabad, 11 Aquarelliste, 12 Millenary, Storming Home, 14 Boreal, 20 High Pitched, 40 Narrative, 250 Sir Effendi
TOTE INTERNATIONAL (ASCOT SATURDAY)
11-2 Ghannam, 13-2 Demonstrate, 9 Suggestive,10 Scotty's Future, Tillerman, 12 Chookie Heiton, Gateman, 16 Atavus, Crystal Castle, Hurricane Floyd, Just James, 20 Albashoosh, Lunar Leo, Mine, Norton, Steenberg, 22 By Far, 25 Bouncing Bowdler, Duke of Modena, Juniper, Maderno, Pentecost, Point of Dispute, 28 Definate Guest, Irish Flower, 33 Idle Power, Invader, Naviasky, Royal Millennium, 40 Bar
VODAFONE STEWARDS CUP (GOODWOOD 3rd AUGUST)
7 Feet So Fast, 8 Boarder Subject, 16 Awake, Halmahera, Hurricane Floyd, Only Time Will Tell, Palace Affair, Tom Tun, Trace Clip, Vanderlin, 20 Artie, Doctor Spin, Grey Eminence, Kingscross, Watching, 25 Bali Royal, Boanerges, Bond Boy, Candleriggs, Flak Jacket, Further Outlook, Good Girl, Kathology, Manorbier, Mister Cosmi, My American Beauty, Peruvian Chief, Salviati, Scotty's Future, Seven No Trumps, Undeterred, 33 Bar
TOTE EBOR (YORK 21st AUGUST)
8 Harlestone Grey, Highest, 10 Shagraan, 12 Sarangani, 14 Bangalore, Bourgeois, 16 Barathea Blazer, Cupboard Lover, Damask Rose, Researched, Roar of the Tiger, Roman Hideaway, Travelmaite, 20 Big Moment, Dancing Bay, Kasthari, Lingo, Polar Red, Pole Star, Sentinel, Solo Flight, Thundering Surf, 25 Aluissage, Archduke Ferdinand, Charley Bates, Contraband, Darasim, Hambledon, Hirapour, Jasmick, Johnny Oscar, Lady Two K, Mana D'Argent, Media Puzzle, Mr Andrea, Ovambo, Quality Team , Ranville, Scott's View, Stance, Swing Win, Takamaka Bay, Tamiami Trail, Zibeline, 33 Anna Kareena, Bollin Nellie, Capal Garmon, Dawn Invasion, Demi Beau, Dune, Hugs Dancer, King's Welcome, Loop The Loup, Marrakech, Moon Emperor, Mutakarrim, Night Sight, Perestroika, Rajam, Reviewer, Total Turtle
GIVEN WANTS MORE GLORIOUS GOODWOOD WINNERS
Trainer James Given, who got off the mark at Goodwood during last year's Festival Meeting when Hugs Dancer prevailed in the Marriott Hotels Goodwood Handicap, could have a strong team next week over the five days including his 2001 hero who will return to defend his crown.
Hugs Dancer, who denied Gracilis by two and a half lengths in the 2001 21-furlong Marriott Hotels Goodwood Handicap, is on target to attempt the double on Wednesday, July 31.
Given said: "Hugs Dancer will come back and have another go. He's quite a bit higher in the handicap than he was last year, having had a couple of good runs including a win in the Cumberland Plate over a mile and a half at Carlisle."
The Lincolnshire-based trainer will probably be represented by recent Scottish Stewards' Cup winner Tom Tun in the original version, the £85,000 Vodafone Stewards' Cup, on Saturday, August 3, 2002, depending on the ground. The seven-year-old has a 3lb penalty for this victory at Hamilton and has been put up 8lb by the official handicapper.
Given said: "He's very well in. Tom Tun would be an intended runner but it depends on the weather - if it came up very firm I wouldn't run him because he just hates firm ground. His ideal ground is dead ground so anything good or softer would be fine."
The Bold Arrangement gelding will be enjoying his first run at Britain's most beautiful racecourse, which throws up pros and cons according to Given.
"I'm not so sure if he'll be suited by coming downhill but when it comes to the climbing ground near the end that will be in his favour."
Given is also likely to run Hallion, although he hasn't yet spoken to the owner (Mike Dawson), in the £100,000 William Hill Mile on the previous day. The three-year-old was well beaten recently when stepped up to ten furlongs in a Newmarket handicap, having previously won a mile maiden by three-and-a-half lengths at York in June.
"Hallion is still rather unexposed I think - we ran him over one mile two furlongs last time at Newmarket's July Meeting but he didn't stay," the trainer commented.
The Newmarket outing was the first time the Halling colt had competed in a handicap (off a mark of 91).
Given commented: "It's not easy to say whether he's well in or not. I thought that the handicapper was a bit hard on him. After three runs in maidens, he gave Hallion a mark of 76. Then he won his maiden at York and the handicapper stuck him up 15lb for that which I thought was a bit excessive."
Like his stable companion in the Vodafone Stewards' Cup, Hallion's participation is dependent on the ground.
Given added: "I'm not sure if I'd run him if it came up very quick either, he's a heavy-topped horse."
The handler also revealed that his star two-year-old filly Wunders Dream may take her place in the Group Three betfair.com Molecomb Stakes on Thursday, August 1, 2002.
The Averti filly was impressive when winning events at Newmarket and Nottingham. She found just Presto Vento, who was favoured by a high draw, too good in the valuable Weatherbys Super Sprint at Newbury on July 20.
Given declared "Wunders Dream is a possibility for the betfair.com Molecomb but not with any degree of certainty, she may run there. She won her race (on the far side at Newbury) but sadly it wasn't the race."
MICHAEL JARVIS OUTLINES GLORIOUS GOODWOOD PLANS
Trainers are busy making plans for their horses over the five days of the Glorious Goodwood meeting which starts on Tuesday, July 30, 2002.
Michael Jarvis is hoping that Tarfshi can run well in the £135,000 Group One Vodafone Nassau Stakes on Saturday, August 3, the final day.
The Newmarket-based trainer has a good record at Goodwood and when In A Silent Way won her maiden at the West Sussex racecourse earlier this season, she became Jarvis's 30th course winner, 13 of whom have come at Glorious Goodwood.
Tarfshi is enjoying a fine 2002 campaign, having won two of her three starts including, most recently, the Group Two Hunston Financial Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh on June 29, when she had subsequent Irish Oaks heroine Margarula over three lengths adrift in fourth.
Jarvis said today (Wednesday, July 24): "I've always thought that Tarfshi was a Group performer. She's progressing nicely and I'd be hopeful that she can progress to Group One level."
The four-year-old Mtoto filly won a conditions event at Sandown on soft ground in 2000 but her handler believes the good ground which she recently encountered in Ireland is more to her liking.
He explained: "She's better on good or good to firm ground. She wouldn't want very soft ground, but she's unlikely to encounter that at Goodwood anyway."
Jarvis has a slight worry about Tarfshi over the undulating course: "If I had a concern, it is that not every horse acts at Goodwood. However, she's fairly adaptable and the ground should be perfect, the trip (one mile two furlongs) is dead right and I'm hopeful."
The trainer is also intending Millennium Dragon to tackle the £50,000 Group Three Theo Fennell Lennox Stakes over seven furlongs on Friday, August 2.
The Mark Of Esteem colt has already won twice over seven furlongs this season, including a Listed race at Newmarket on May 25, and was fifth to Continent in the six-furlong Group One Darley July Cup at the same venue on his latest outing.
Jarvis revealed: "Millennium Dragon is particularly well and his run in the July Cup was on softish ground. Hopefully, he'll get fast ground at Goodwood."
406 HOPEFULS ENTERED FOR THE BLUE SQUARE SHERGAR CUP
TOP RIDERS ANNOUNCED FOR KIEREN & FRANKIE'S TEAMS
406 horses have been entered for the six races that make up the Blue Square Shergar Cup at Ascot on Saturday 10th August, an increase of 57 on last year, and those getting a run could be drawn in either Kieren Fallon's Great Britain & Ireland team or the Frankie Dettori-captained Dubai Duty Free Rest of The World side.
Dettori's team boasts stars from all around the globe including reprise performances from David Flores (USA), who was last year's star of the show, Craig Williams (Australia) and Gerald Mosse (France), as well as Frankie himself of course.
On the Dubai Duty Free Rest of the World team for the first time this year are Hiroki Goto from Japan and South African champion Doug Whyte (see brief biographies below).
"We won the Blue Square Shergar Cup thanks to a one-two-three in the final race last year," said Dettori. "Of course it was always the plan to lull the others into a false sense of security and nail them on the line! Good captaincy I call it, we were never worried!"
Riding under current champion jockey Fallon in the home team will be Pat Eddery, Kevin Darley, Richard Quinn, Mick Kinane and Johnny Murtagh.
"I'm thrilled to be leading out Pat and the boys," said Fallon. "Obviously we've got more track experience so we have to be confident of winning the Blue Square Shergar Cup. But that said, riding Ascot for the first time didn't stop David (Flores) last year, he had two winners and a second from five rides then and he's back to torment us again!"
61 horses have been entered for the opening £45,100 Moss Bros Shergar Cup Mile (54 in 2001), headed by the Terry Mills-trained Royal Hunt Cup winner NORTON. Ascot handicap regulars SCOTTY'S FUTURE (D. Nicholls), MUCHEA (M. Channon) and DUKE OF MODENA (G. Balding) also feature among the entries along with last year's fifth, the bang in form CALCUTTA (B. Hills).
The £45,100 British Red Cross Shergar Cup Juvenile has attracted a massive entry of 139, well up on last year's figure of 110. Royal Ascot winner REVENUE (M. Bell), and TACITUS (R. Hannon), second in Newmarket's July Stakes, could run in the seven furlong race for owners The Royal Ascot Racing Club. Smart prospect HURRICANE ALAN (R. Hannon) and prolific winner MIDDLEHAM PEACOCK (P. Haslam) also catch the eye.
The £50,000 Porthault Shergar Cup Distaff boasts 58 entries compared to 34 at this stage last year. 2001 winner FLYING MILLIE (R. Beckett) could be back for a repeat bid along with DAMALIS (E. Alston), SCARLETT RIBBON (P. Makin) and VITA SPERICOLATA (J. Wainwright), who all finished behind the winner in last year's six furlong contest.
46 horses are under consideration for the £50,000 Millennium Hotels and Resorts Shergar Cup Stayers (49 in 2001) including last year's winner MOON EMPEROR (J. Jenkins). Fifth placed COURT SHAREEF (R. Price) and sixth WAVE OF OPTIMISM (Mrs L. Pearce) are also on target for Ascot's marathon event of the day over two miles.
THUNDERING SURF (J. Jenkins), winner of the Duke of Edinburgh Handicap at this year's Royal Meeting, heads 48 entries (43 in 2001) in his bid to win back-to-back Carvill Shergar Cup Challenges. Second in last year's mile-and-a-half race was MANA D'ARGENT, for Mark Johnston, a great supporter of the Blue Square Shergar Cup in recent years, and responsible for four entries in this year's £45,100 contest. Mana d'Argent came back to his very best to win the Tote Exacta Handicap at Ascot earlier in the month and could be joined by stablemates LOVE EVERLASTING, TAKAMAKA BAY and ROBANDELA.
The 6f Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup Sprint, at £100,000 the most valuable race on the card, has attracted a quality field of 54 (59 in 2001) including three from Aidan O'Brien. HIDDEN DRAGON, sixth in the Jersey Stakes and SAHARA DESERT, eighth in the July Cup, have already shown form in top races while MADERNO has been running well at around Group Three level. The Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot could prove the most informative guide to next month's big Ascot sprint with second placed STEENBERG (M. Tompkins), the third, MESHAHEER (S. bin Suroor), fourth, HO CHOI (L. Perratt), and fifth, MILLENNIUM DRAGON (M. Jarvis), all possibles. FEET SO FAST (W. Musson), favourite for the forthcoming Stewards' Cup, is also in the race along with AGNETHA (D. Weld) and MASKAYA (J. Burns), who could both add to the Aidan O'Brien-led Irish raiding party.
"The pull of £335,300 in prize money and free entry, along with the fact that all 60 runners on the day are guaranteed to win prize money, has produced record entries," said Nick Cheyne, Clerk of the Course at Ascot.
"David Flores stole the show last year and it's great that he's coming back. He impressed everyone here and gave his weighing room colleagues in the States plenty to shout about as they watched him via satellite before racing at Del Mar.
"It's marvelous that Frankie, Craig and Gerald are back too and we're looking forward to seeing Doug and Hiroki in the event for the first time. As champion jockey, Kieren takes the role of Great Britain & Ireland Captain this year and he'll be joined by five of the highest profile riders on the domestic circuit."
Early indication shows that Ascot's advance ticket sales for the event are up by over 30% compared to this time last year.
The Live Draw, to which members of the press are invited, takes place at Ascot from 1.00pm on Thursday, 8th August. The ten highest rated horses declared at the 48 hour stage are guaranteed to get a run. Five horses in each race will be ridden by the Great Britain & Ireland team and the other five will be ridden by the Rest of the World team. Any horse could be ridden by any one of the jockeys in either team.
In addition to the ten top rated horses at the 48 hour declaration stage, the next two will remain in each race as reserves and can replace a non-runner any time up to noon on Saturday 10th August, the raceday itself. The reserves will receive a £500 transport allowance if they do not get a run.
South African born Doug Whyte, 30, has been champion jockey in Hong Kong for the past two seasons and has finished runner-up in his domestic championship no fewer than five times. He last visited Ascot in 1997, when he partnered the great South African horse London News to third place behind Bosra Sham in the Prince of Wales's Stakes.
Hiroki Goto, 28, has ridden all around the world including spells in Florida and California. He was lying in third place in the jockeys' table in Japan and had just won the Group One Yasuda Kinen when he left to ride in Britain last month.
FLORIDA PEARL WINS TOP AWARD FOR HIS OWNERS
COUNTY Cork couple Violet and Archie O'Leary were today (THURSDAY 25 JULY) honoured as the owners of the horse deemed to have contributed most to the British public's enjoyment during the last National Hunt racing season.
The award, voted for by racing journalists and sponsored by Weatherbys and the Racehorse Owners Association, was given at a lunch at The Lanesborough in London.
The ten-year-old Willie Mullins-trained horse defied his critics last season to win Kempton Park's Boxing Day King George VI Steeplechase - the race made famous in the 1980s and 1990s by the flying greys Desert Orchid and One Man - as well as the Martell Cup at Aintree and the Heineken Gold Cup at Punchestown.
Today, Johnny Weatherby and ROA President Jim Furlong presented Archie O'Leary with a specially commissioned painting of Florida Pearl by artist Terence Gilbert.
Johnny Weatherby, speaking at the lunch, paid warm tribute to Florida Pearl's win in the King George, adding: "Florida Pearl's only disappointment this season was at Cheltenham - otherwise he has been brilliant.
"His run in the Martell Cup at Aintree was superb. Perhaps his best ever performance. He ran away from a quality field to win by 11 lengths. That was the real Florida Pearl."
SHADES OF LEGENDARY ARKLE
A very special piece of unique racing memorabilia is to be made available to Down Royal Racecourse for display at this year's N.I Festival of Racing. The Hennessy Gold Cup won in 1966 by Stalbridge Colonist on the day he beat the legendary, Arkle was bought yesterday at auction by Belfast Property Developer, Frank Boyd Chairman of Killultagh Properties who will make available the piece of racing history to the racecourse and the Festival of Racing for the duration of the event.
Frank Boyd under his Killultagh banner, sponsors the premier novice chase at the fixture and along with his wife, Rose Boyd are leading racehorse owners. Last year, the leading owner won his own race with Killultagh Storm trained by Willie Mullins. The trophy only became available when the son of Stalbridge Colonist's owner decided to sell the Gold Cup as it had spent many years in a bank vault since his fathers death in 1969.
Down Royal Manager, Mike Todd said "The news came as a surprise albeit, a very pleasant surprise. Everyone still knows the name, Arkle and Frank Boyd's offer to display the cup at the Festival will be a welcome reminder of the greatest steeplechaser ever." The Chairman of Killultagh Properties which recently purchased the Connswater Centre and the Northern Ireland portfolio of Dunloe Ewart has always allowed extensive budgets relating to Arts and Culture at developments. The final setting for the historic cup could be a current or new development project. Frank Boyd said "We will consider after the Festival, all options where best to display this little piece of history for the benefit of the public. I'm delighted to have secured the Gold Cup, thanks to Michael Flanagan of Emer Galleries and its future in racing is safe."
CARLISLE RACES AHEAD
The excitement is building at Carlisle Racecourse for the Grand Opening of the new Jubilee Grandstand on October 26th 2002. With everything on schedule, pre-booked tickets are now available for the day.
In the new Jubilee Grandstand, Tattersalls ticket holders will be able to enjoy the three food kiosks and two bars on the ground floor of the building as well as viewing the races from the lower terraces, while those race goers wishing to purchase County badges can view the racing from the upper terracing, the Patterson Bar, or enjoy a superb meal in The Swifts restaurant also overlooking the finishing post.
On the second floor the Jubilee Grandstand also has 7 corporate hospitality boxes available for both companies and individuals wishing to make their visit to Carlisle Racecourse both enjoyable and exclusive. Two of the boxes are now available for annual or seasonal lets.
The opening of the new Jubilee Grandstand also heralds the start of a brand new business for Carlisle Racecourse as it opens it?s doors to both local and national companies as a premier conference and banqueting facility. With nationally renowned caterers now in place, the racecourse has the ability to service all events, from a small executive gathering of 6 to a 600 delegate conference. Hospitality packages can be tailored to suit individual requirements and, not only is the Racecourse a superb venue in which to entertain clients but also the ideal venue for that special birthday or anniversary.
The ground floor of the Jubilee Grandstand also has 307 sq metres of exhibition space, The Bell Hall, while the first floor, Patterson & Swifts suite can cater for parties and conferences from 50 to 500. The corporate boxes on the second floor, all named after the Cumbrian Fell Packs such as Melbreak, Coniston, Ennerdale etc, also offer superb facilities for meetings, seminars and the smaller conferences.
In addition to the facilities offered by the new Jubilee Grandstand, the racecourse offers those companies who wish to train and develop their staff the absolute ideal venue for team building and outdoor activities. With over 250 acres of parklands, Carlisle Racecourse can offer many exciting and creative on site activities.
Meanwhile, as the excitement mounts, the next race meetings at Carlisle Racecourse are approaching fast, with the Discover Racing Race Meeting on Wednesday 31st July and a superb Ladies Night on August 5th, kindly sponsored by Lloyd Mini of Kingstown, Carlisle.
2003 FIXTURE LIST PUBLISHED BY BHB
The British Horseracing Board today publishes Racing's Fixture List for 2003, which fulfils the Board's policy of meeting the needs of racegoers, punters, racehorse owners, breeders, the betting industry and the media in a balanced manner which maximises Racing's income.
Its key features include:
1,270 fixtures, up 48 on 2002
70 Sunday fixtures on 24 Sundays (compared to 60 on 19 Sundays in 2002), allowing a further extension of the successful Sunday programme but with fixtures placed so as to include breaks in the calendar to alleviate pressure on training yards and, in particular, stable staff
175 evening fixtures on 85 evenings (163 and 77 in 2002), including 7 Saturday evenings in the summer period (6 in 2002) and, for the first time, racing on every Thursday evening from mid-May to mid-August
No breaks of the Levy Board's Fixture Criteria, compared to 7 in 2002
The addition of a third fixture on those Monday and Tuesday afternoons in the autumn and winter on which only two fixtures were programmed in 2002
The addition of a fifth fixture on four Saturday afternoons in the autumn and winter, awarded to racecourses in the North in recognition of the demand for additional opportunities in the North in this period
2003 will also see:
A continuous run of eight-race All Weather Track fixtures on Saturdays from the end of November 2002 to the start of March 2003 to safeguard betting turnover in the winter months, with the extra races to be added to the front of existing cards
The Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup Meeting at Newbury scheduled for Saturday and Sunday (as against Friday and Saturday in 2002)
The creation of a two-day Saturday and Sunday Becher Chase Meeting at Aintree (formerly just a Sunday fixture)
Newmarket's Cambridgeshire Meeting reduced to three days from four
The creation of a new two-day Festival at Perth in July
For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink