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Knotty Ash progresses in graded company

  June 9 , 2019

Prasanna Kumar trained Knotty Ash who had recorded an impressive win last time out extended his supremacy in graded race company as well when he easily staved off the challenge of the accomplished Mauritania to win the 1200 metres Shapoorji Pallonji Million, a terms race for four-year-olds and over, the feature event of Sunday`s Bangalore races. Knotty Ash no doubt was favoured by the terms of the race as he was in receipt of 5.5 kgs from Mauritania but to the credit of Knotty Ash, it must be mentioned that the switch to the graded race company was made in emphatic fashion against formidable lot of horses.

Knotty Ash who was ambitiously campaigned over longer trips in search of classics in the previous seasons found finally found his bearings in the sprint. Incidentally, he is by a sprinting sire Gusto and thus his performance in the sprint did not exactly come as a surprise though the ease with which he won certainly was unexpected.

Mauritania who had the benefit of a race run was made the favourite against a competitive lot of horses as the progeny of Excellent Art is also the holder of the course record. Tutankhamun who had beaten the former in his previous run was next in demand with Knotty Ash being available at long odds. Jockey Anthony Raj benefitted by the innermost draw that Knotty Ash had, and this made things easy for the lesser fancied runner who had the support of the rails and could easily go to the front and control the pace from there. Sandesh on Mauritania moved up from the outside draw to stay in touch with Tutankhamun and the rest were spaced out behind.

Knotty Ash came into the straight a couple of lengths clear of Mauritania who was hard ridden to bridge the gap. However, Mauritania could not make any impression as Knotty Ash skipped ahead to win by a shade over two lengths. Mauritania fought off the late flourish of Accolade to retain the runner-up berth. Tutankhamun was fourth. Knotty Ash clocked a modest time of one minute 11.28 seconds.

Darius Byramji trained Set To Win bounced back to win the 1400 metres Y S Surender Memorial Trophy, a race for horses rated 45 to 65. Set To Win produced a scintillating run along the rails in the hands of jockey Zervan and got the better of Good Time Indeed who had attempted to win the race from the word `go` with about 100 metres left in the race. Piper Regina made a late rally to grab the third position from Stand Out. Striking Grey who was the favourite, failed to show any spark and was a beaten cause well before the race came to the boil.

Pradeep Annaiah trained Marco Polo was backed to the exclusion of the rest in the 1400 metres Fire Haven Plate, a race for horses rated 15 to 35. Marco Polo had won during the winter but subsequently was disqualified due to a breach of medication rules. Marco Polo had won when he was rated 24 but following the disqualification, the penalty incurred for the win was removed. The seasonal drop also ensured that he ran well below the winning mark with the rating having dropped to 20. Star Cavalry was widely expected to be a force to reckon with. In the event, the race turned out to be an anti-climax. Lesser fancied Renegade who hit the front from the start stayed put there and won the race from Marco Polo with a measure of comfort to provide jockey Zervan with the third win of the day. Star Cavalry disappointed by finishing a tame third.

Arjun Mangalorkar trained Kirkwood justified the strong support in the betting ring by just about lasting out to win 1400 metres Moonlight Romance Plate, a race for maiden three-year-olds. Defender led from the start and stayed on resolutely before being overwhelmed by the favourite inside the final furlong. Roman Senator gave a chase along with the late-rallying Northern Alliance, but Kirkwood managed to reach the safety of the winning post winning by a shade less than a length. Northern Alliance nosed out Roman Senator in the final stride to snatch the runner-up berth. Both these horses should strike before long. Suraj Narredu was astride the winner.

The combination of Darius Byramji and Zervan were involved in a fruitful association by scoring a double. Natalma who had been an expensive purchase but had failed to live up to the expectations thus far was taken on a start to finish mission by jockey Zervan. The progeny of Multidimensional stayed on doggedly front in the 1600 metres Flirting Vision Plate, a race for horses rated 15 to 35 to win the race from Another Rainbow who was closing the leeway menacingly. Proud Prince was a close third.

There were a pair of races for the horses in the lowest class and both were claimed by lesser fancied runners. Track Striker who had run a noteworthy race over a seven-furlong trip last time out got the lead going into the final furlong and managed to maintain a slender lead while crossing the winning post. Favourite Ekalavya and Galino were both finishing on strongly, but the winning post came a trifle too soon for these two runners.

Pradeep Annaiah trained Darahasini appeared to be the medium of a quiet touch as support came pouring on for the four-year-old whose odds came down noticeably in the betting ring. Jockey Surya managed to drive out the lesser fancied runner to victory over favourite Chula Vista who despite having all the chances did not have an extra gear to make a difference to the verdict. Duty Call was third. Jockey Pradeep Chouhan who rode the fifth-placed Songkran raised an objection against the rider of All By Myself who had finished fourth and Surya who had ridden the winner for interference. The objection against Jagadeesh who rode All By Myself was upheld and Songkran was moved up a place. The other objection was overruled.


Track Striker (Antony Raj S up) winner of the Endorsement Plate

Darahasini ( Surya P up) winner of the June Plate

Natalma (S Zervan up) winner of the Flirting Vision Plate

Set To Win(S Zervan up) winner of the Y. S. Surender Memorial Trophy

Knotty Ash (Antony Raj S up) winner of the Shapoorji Pallonji Million

Kirkwood (Suraj Narredu up) winner of the Moonlight Romance Plate

Renegade (S Zervan up) winner of the Fire Haven Plate

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