Vittal Deshmukh trained Machiavellianism won his lead up race to the Golconda Guineas in splendid fashion, toying with the opposition to claim the 1400 metres Sri Shamlal Gupta Memorial Cup, a Category I race, the highlight of Monday`s races held at Malakpet. The winner of Grade I Colts Championship at Bangalore, Machiavellianism is in rousing form and it is hard to see anyone upsetting him in the Guineas.
Despite carrying top weight, Nasheeta was backed strongly to win the 1600 metrs C Satyanarayana Memorial Cup, a Category II race. Lesser fancied San Ramon was taken on a start to finish by
Seven year old Iaepetus was the pace setter with Melody Queen in close proximity while Machiavellianism was relaxed in about fourth position. Iaepetus could not sustain his foray in front for long in the straight as Melody Queen went ahead. Pradeep Chouhan who was biding for his time on the favourite relaxed the grip on Machiavellianism inside the final furlong and this was enough for the got abroad three year old to cruise past the front runners to win by a widening margin of three lengths. Golden Queen was an impressive second ahead of Golden Palace. The front running effort told on Iaepetus as he finished in distress way behind.
Chouhan with Nasheeta not allowing him free run, racing at an arm`s length. In the straight, the duo fought for a while before Nasheeta measured the front runner and spared a length at the finish. The Leader as is his wont made a late rally but narrowly missed the runner up berth by a neck. Sam Ramon was beaten more for turn of foot than for staying ability and it is quite possible that if Chouhan had set a stronger pace and made the top weight that the favourite carried count, he could have made things difficult for the eventual winner.
A backward lot of two year olds faced the starter in the 1000 metres Grace Hanover Plate and Dandelion who had run second in his previous outing was installed the overwhelming favourite. It took a while for the loading operations to be completed. Quite often it is frustrating to see loading of horses taking painfully long time. The trainers need to be advised to train them better to react to the gates. After about 10 minutes of effort, the seven horses were ready to take off. Dandelion led the field from the start with only Baazigar chasing in earnest while the rest ran green and ran way behind. Inside the final furlong, Dandelion looked like holding on but he began to drift which enabled Baazigar to cover up the leeway and spare a shade less than a length at the finish. Golden Art was a distance behind third.
Prasad Raju trained Celtic Rose came in for spirited betting in the Time And Place Plate (Div I), a Category II race and the well-bred four year old filly justified the faith of her backers with a start to finish mission over five furlongs, proving too speedy for the rest. Best Pal managed to retain the runner up berth from Vijaysheel who could have got that slot with a more vigorous effort than the one given. Price Warrior put a similar effort to win the lower division of the race with Kohinoor Pride making desperate efforts to overhaul the front runner but failed as the lesser fancied runner skipped away. Dream Deal finished a tame third.
Donald Netto trained Always Bullish was considered a good bet in the 1400 metres Golden Dagger Plate, a Category II race. Relaxed in the rear group, Always Bullish was alighted to the task in the final furlong. The favourite picked up speed instantly to get the better of front running Bloody Mary to win impressively. Ocean Side nosed out stablemate for the second slot in the final stride.
Queens Necklace shaped to win the 1200 metres Bakranangal Plate, a six furlong Category III race but closer home faltered as Cannon Law headed her in the final moments of the race. Golden Dash who came in for spirited betting close to race time, could not get into a striking position early on and by the time he warmed up to the task, he had too much leeway to cover. Golden Dash came up with a menacing run only to find the winning post coming a wee bit early.