Trainer Donald Netto stole the limelight in the races held at Malakpet on Monday, saddling four winners through Amrapal, Stolen Date, Home Town and Audacious, the first two as rank outsiders and the last two as overwhelming favourites. Three trainers cleaned up the nine event card with Shezad Abbas saddling three winners while Narayan Rao led in winners through Molecule in the feature event and Wedding Gift. Jockeys hitting the turf are becoming depressingly regular.
Molecule had a tough passage despite which she had finished an eye catching third in her last effort. Corvette was widely expected to win and the five year old mare went into the race as a favourite while the rest of the runners were available at nourishing odds. Lumiere Blanche set a fast pace as the small field of six runners set out for the P Veereshwar Rao Memorial Cup, a six furlong Category II race, the feature event of the day with Corvette, Indian Epic, Molecule and Jewel In The Crown following behind. Lumiere Blanche was hard pressed to keep the lead as the other runners closed in with a little more than a furlong to go. Indian Epic flattered to deceive and faded out. Molecule came up with great flourish on the wide outside and with a furlong left in the race, had the race in her control. Lumiere Blanche held on to the runner up berth from late finishing Jewel In The Crown and Corvette.
| ||Molecule (D K Ashish up) winner of the P Veereeshwar Rao Memorial Cup, being led in by trainer M V Narayan Rao, Dr.Sukh Dev & Mr.M Majid Ali Khan|
It is often seen whether by design or accident, when two horses from the same stable run, the lesser fancied runner upsets. Netto`s Majestic Rock was the fancied one in the Elusive Hero Plate (Div I) but it was left to aptly named Stolen Date to bring off the biggest upset of the day. Stolen Date went into the lead from the start of the seven furlong trip and showed no signs of weakening as she lengthened her strides and had a big break over Majestic Rock when he began to devour ground. All that he could do was to close the leeway and saved the second spot by a whisker from Deccan Queen who finished on well. Netto`s Amrapal won the lower division of the race also at long odds as she led from the start and did not budge from that place. Favourite Foudre Rouge was a faraway second ahead of The Best Man.
The winners of both the divisions of Priceless Polly Plate were saddled by Netto. Audacious was backed to the exclusion of the rest in the upper division of the seven furlong race. Jockey Imran Khan waited patiently with the favourite in the third position as Guiding Spirit did the front running. Imran slipped the favourite along the rails and broke into an unassailable lead with 300 metres left in the race. Rob Roy who followed her along the rails could only bridge the leeway considerably towards the finish. Home Town was strongly backed to win the lower division of the race. Brianna led the field as Home Town was eased in about fifth or sixth position with Spanish Conquest refusing to raise a fluent gallop and trailing the field. Home Town took the turn wide and picked up speed instantly to have the racing in safe keeping with a furlong left in the race. Spanish Conquest warmed up late to finish an impressive second. Brianna faded out of contention under pressure. Enrapture ran on to finish third.
The 1000 metres Race Club Cup saw two jockeys having a fall. Jockey Anil fell on Saint Louis as the start was given. Fearless Mission who was racing in the rear position came down abruptly and collapsed bringing jockey A Joshi also down. The fall looked pretty bad as the horse did not get up and the jockey was motionless on the ground. Luckily, the jockey escaped with only a collar bone fracture. One was not sure whether something is wrong with the track because horses seem to be losing their foothold and breaking down. Dazzling Princess had control of the proceedings till the final 200 metres at which point Commanche Gold came into strong contention. Even as these two were engaged in the battle for supremacy came favourite Inner Strength with a brilliant run to steal the verdict in the final strides of the race. The winner was trained by Shezad Abbas.
Shezad led in a winner through first timer Golden Arrow who fought an absorbing battle with favourite Chocolate Slider all the way in the straight before necking out the former in the 1100 metres Hidden Bloom Plate, a race for two year olds. The winner slightly hampered the progress for the runner up along the rails by cramping him for room but the interference was not serious enough for the Stewards to reverse the order following an objection by jockey Ramana who rode the runner up.
Apprentice Kiran Naidu who was riding after a long hibernation, guided the well backed Metaforce from Shezad`s yard to a facile start to finish in the 1200 metres Srisailam Plate, a Category III race. One One One went in futile chase of the front runner but managed to nose out Silver Liner for the runner up berth. Palace Affairs who was sluggish at the start finished fourth.
After racing in about fourth or fifth position along the rails, Narayan Rao trained Wedding Gift got a dream run along the rails as the front runners took the final bend wide. Jockey Ashish pushed Wedding Gift through the fortuitous opening and the lesser fancied runner burst away from the pack to win as he pleased from Drayton and late rallying Nano Storm.