Vishal Gaikwad trained Van Dyke was strongly backed to reverse the verdict on Western Front, and he did so with a measure of comfort in the1600 metres Red buttons Plate, a race for horses rated 40 to 66, the highest-rated event of Thursday`s Mumbai races. The well-backed Rhapsody found the distance too sharp for comfort and ended up a tame third.
Jockey Trevor Patel kept Van Dyke a handy second behind pacesetter Khartoum well into the straight before pressing the accelerator. Van Dyke responded well and went storming clear and had no problem in staving off the challenge of Western Front once again, this time with more authority. Rhapsody who came in for sustained support in the betting ring was coming back in distance and Srinath had to switch the fancied runner to the wide outside in the stretch after letting the horses in front go clear as he could not get a clear run along the inside. This manoeuvre meant that he had some leeway to cover and though Rhapsody finished with a late rally, the leeway conceded was too much to bridge.
Pesi Shroff trained Parisian made a winning debut in the 1400 metres Priceless Place, a race for horses in the lowest category. There was support for Vishal Gaikwad trained One For The Glory to oblige but the odds drift and the manner in which it was ridden by Trevor Patel did not indicate any seriousness. From a handy fourth or fifth position at the final turn, Parisian moved swiftly in the stretch and had the race well sewn up with a furlong left in the race in the hands of jockey N S Parmar. Sweeping Move was second five lengths adrift while Éclair held off One For the Glory to save place money.
Jockey David Egan drove out Mount Mariah to victory over favourite Speed Air in the1400 metres D P C Kapadia Trophy, a race for horses rated 20 to 46. Close to race time, there was a rush of money on the Dallas Todywalla trainee Mount Mariah whose odds crashed in the ring. Our Savage and Ron led the field with Mount Mariah settled in the third position while Speed Air was a few lengths adrift. David Egan got busy on the fancied runner in the stretch who measured the front-running Our Savage in the final furlong and bounced clear. Though Mount Mariah drifted out under pressure, he had enough cushion to win with a measure of comfort from Speed Air who once again had to be satisfied with the runner-up berth. Oui Savage was third ahead of last start winner Ron.
Deepesh Narredu trained Leopard Rock made a winning debut swamping the opposition in the 1000 metres Sir Charles Forbes Trophy, a race for maiden three-year-olds. Pesi Shroff trained Smokin` Hot was the favourite but in keeping with the trend of the stable`s horses running way below expectations this season, the favourite performed poorly and did not give hopes for her supporters at any stage of the race. Gold Charm ran freely in front and had the lead going into the final furlong but was floored by the late flourish of long shot Leopard Rock who came from way off the pace to go storming clear for an impressive win. Aegon ran on to take the second position ahead of the long-time leader Gold Charm.
Lesser fancied runner from the stables of trainer Narendra Lagad flew home to nail favourite Westeros in the closing stages of the races in the 1000 metres Picasso Place, a race for horses rated 20 to 46. Brave led from the start with Westeros in the chase. Closer home even as Westeros was getting the better of Brave, the latter`s stablemate Julio Cesaro joined issue. Westeros still held the edge, but the complexion of the race changed when Ustad Pedro showed up on the wide outside from way of the pace, covered the ground with big strides and edged past Westeros. The latter held off Julio Cesaro by a neck to take the second position while Brave was relegated to the fourth position.
In a battle among the three horses from trainer Narendra Lagad`s stable, Red Carnation got the better of Abraxas close home and then held off another stablemate Cest L`Amour to win the 1000 metres Blurr Plate (Div I), a race for horses rated 4 to 30. Incidentally, the last win of Red Carnation had come 329 days back and the winning jockey on the last occasion was also Kaviraj. Red Carnation had run fourth in the higher class in his last run and he was running in the class where he had registered the only win of his 20 career starts. Romantic Warrior came in for big support but the seven-year-old was never in the hunt. Apprentice jockey Shubham very nearly paid dearly for his indiscretion when he eased up favourite Dilbar close home and Forever Free came close to toppling the favourite but the winning post came to the rescue in the lower division of the race. The Antia trainee Dilbar came in for one-sided support in the betting ring. Dilbar chased Maestro into the straight before storming clear in the final furlong. Jockey Shubham eased up the horse in the closing stages of the race as the others were several lengths behind. Forever Free produced a strong effort and luckily for Shubham, the favourite was a neck ahead at the post. Maestro stayed on to finish third.
Dilbar (D R Shubham up) winner of the Blurr Plate (Div-II)
Ustad Pedro (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Picasso Plate
Van Dyke (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Red Buttons Plate
Parisian (N S Parmar up) winner of the Priceless Plate
Mount Moriah (David Egan up) winner of the D P C Kapadia Trophy
Leopard Rock (S A Amit up) winner of the Sir Charles Forbes Trophy
Red Carnation (P S Kaviraj up) winner of the Blurr Plate (Div-I)