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Lady In Lace wins Guineas in a thriller

By: Frankel   December 16 , 2017

Prasad Raju trained Lady In Lace pulled off a thrilling win over late-finishing Windsor Forest and battling Ruffina to win the Gr 1 Spartan Poker Indian 1000 Guineas, the first classic of the season on Saturday. The Hyderabad challenger who burst on the national scene with a spectacular win in the Pune Derby in October, lived up to the expectations of being a gutsy fighter when coming from way off the pace and managing to reach the safety of the winning post before Windsor Forest could surprise her. For trainer Prasad Raju who rarely ventures out in pursuit of classics, this win would be ranked as the very best because of the stature of this race.

It was hard to look beyond the unbeaten Ruffina and Lady In Lace as the horses to be at the busy end. Manifold was no doubt an accomplished performer, but the mile-long trip was bound to prove too sharp for comfort. Windsor Forest had run a great race in the Fillies Championship Stakes and did not have the luck of the race when Manifold held off Romantic Star at Bangalore in July but while the rest of the runners had built up an aura about them, Windsor Forest had been a low-key contestant for the race.

Ice Dancer did the job of a pacemaker but with none keen on going with the pace, Neeraj Rawal was forced to move up on Manifold to be in second position ahead of Ruffina who was keen to disobey the jockey and take off. Windsor Forest was in the midfield while jockey Suraj Narredu dared to settle Lady In Lace in the rear position, pinning trust on the filly`s turn of foot. Neeraj got busy on Manifold on straightening for home with David Allan biding his time on Ruffina before making his move. The two fought for a while with Ruffina shooting ahead in the final furlong. In the meanwhile, Lady In Lace had come into contention with a smooth run, getting all the spaces needed and came to challenge Ruffina. Neeraj on Manifold decided to move his horse out of the rails where the gap had closed and at the same time Lady In Lace in was getting into top gear. Trevor Patel who was getting Windsor Forest into rhythm saw much to his chagrin, his passage blocked more because Manifold rolled out. He had to delay his challenge by a fraction of a second. Ruffina fought valiantly with Lady In Lace but the extended trip which she was essaying for the first time saw her stamina sapping. Lady In Lace surged ahead and held off the late flourish of Windsor Forest for whom the luck of the race spoiled her chances of giving the jockey back to back success in the event. While Lady In Lace won by a diminishing margin of a neck, Windsor Forest was ¾ of a length ahead of a tiring Ruffina. Manifold finished fourth, another ¾ lengths behind Ruffina.

Visiting jockey David Probert got his first winner in India when he drove home Riquewihr to a facile win in the 1000 metres Faiz Jasdanwalla Trophy, a race for maiden two-year-olds. Dancing Lances was the strong favourite to win the race. After Medici led the field into the straight and veered out, Probert pushed Riquewihr to take over the running along the rails. The progeny of Phoenix Tower showed tremendous acceleration to go storming clear to win by a big margin. Under the right-handed whipping of jockey Trevor Patel, Dancing Lances reacted violently, veering out to the outer edge of the track and losing whatever chance he had of putting up a fight. Star Inspiration ran on to finish second ahead of Falconette.

Trainer M K Jadhav has been running a bad patch. Goshawk who had run forward races during the Bangalore Summer Season looked to be cut above the rest in the 1200 metres Uttam Singh Trophy (Div I), a race for horses rated 20 to 46. Jockey Sandesh rushed Goshawk to the front even as the final turn approached. Goshawk stormed clear and appeared to be on course for a resounding win but began to send distress signals in the final furlong. Aurelia who had some ground to cover on the front-runner, powered her way past the tiring front-runner to win with a measure of comfort. Arc Shine continued to earn precious stake money by finishing third. This is the sixth run of Arc Shine and each time, she has brought in stake money. Pradeep Chouhan on Tanjo sat patiently in second position till approaching the final furlong before asking for an effort from the lesser fancied runner. The progeny of Western Aristocrat picked up steam quickly and sailed past the tiring front-runner Lesrel to win the lower division of the Uttam Singh trophy by a widening margin of four lengths. Elixir ran on to take the second position ahead of Fine Tune. Favourite Wabi Sabi performed way below expectations.

Chouhan also drove out the fancied Odessa to an easy win in the 1600 metres Sir Rahimtoola Chinoy Trophy, a race for horses rated 60 to 86. Odessa burst through the pack in the final furlong and got the better of favourite Jeannine to win by shade less than two lengths. Eternal Sunshine ran on to finish second best ahead of Jeannine who flattered to deceive.

Jockey Neeraj Rawal had to fully extend himself on Goldie`s Pet to help the three-year-old filly record an encore in the 1000 metres Ranjit V Bhat Memorial Gold Trophy, a race for horses rated 80 and above. Goldie`s Pet took a while to overhaul the front-running Nascar and even as the filly was gaining the upper hand, there was a cavalry charge from behind. However, Goldie`s Pet held on to win from Abbey, Brynhill and Governor General who were all covering up ground menacingly.

Pradeep Chouhan had a treble for the day when he guided favourite Rising Brave to victory by a margin of eight and half lengths in the 1400 metres M N Nazir Trophy, a race for horses rated 20 to 46. While maneuvering his way from the wide outside draw, Chouhan had his horse roll over to the rails rather quickly, cramping the field on the inside which resulted in the fall of jockey J Chinoy on Kinght`s Quest. Beneficial who was affected by the scrimmage on the inside, managed to edge out Philadelphia for the runner-up berth. There was a Stewards` enquiry into the incident, but the result was allowed to stand. Chouhan may end up with a penalty for his indiscretion of rolling over to the rails abruptly.

Shazaan Shan trained Happy Birthday recorded an encore in the 1200 metes Mrs Patmore Trophy, a race for horses in the lowest class. Happy Birthday shot ahead with a furlong left in the race and had no problem in reaching the winning post ahead of Dusky Siren who made a late charge. Silver Moon was third.


Odessa (P S Chouhan up) winner of the Sir Rahimtoola Chinoy Trophy

Tanjo (P S Chouhan up) winner of the Uttam Singh Trophy (Div-II)

Goldie`s Pet (Neeraj Rawal up) winner of the Ranjit V Bhat Memorial Gold Trophy

Riquewihr (David Probert up) winner of the Faiz Jasdanwalla Trophy

Aurelia (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Uttam Singh Trophy (Div-I)

Rising Brave (P S Chouhan up) winner of the Kejriwal Trophy

Lady In Lace (Suraj Narredu up) winner of the Spartan Poker Indian 1000 Guineas (Gr.1)

Grande Vitesse (K Nazil up) winner of the M N Nazir Trophy

Happy Birthday (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Mrs Patmore Trophy

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