• Punjabi Girl wins The Fillies Championship Stakes (Gr.1)
  • Sir Cecil wins The Colts Championship Stakes (Gr.1)
By Epsom Ace
Tuesday 04 Apr 2017

It was an afternoon of mixed fortunes and mixed feelings for punters at RCTC – mixed fortunes because both favourites and long shots shared the spoils and mixed feelings as it was the penultimate day of the season. Jockey Dashrath Singh seems to be on course for the championship riband as he notched up a comfortable double with Dragon Of War and Shivalik Story. The latter, a mare by Acclamation out of Sweeping Story, made the Regal Star Handicap a start to finish affair. While her nearest adversary Roman Flame was done in by an outside draw, the best of the rest was Star One.

Earlier, Dashrath had piloted Dragon Of War (Phoenix Tower – Marwaha/ Manjri Stud) to a start-to-finish triumph in the Cupid Handicap. The surprising public choice – Celerino – was a no show while Altus put up a good fight.

The afternoon commenced with a bang as friendless Arion (Chatham Strait-Lithianski) won the Abs Fabs Handicap in the hands of Mudassar Nazar. The Robert Gowli-trained ward had in fact  been showing his inclination to raise a winning gallop for some time now, and chose the right moment by waiting to fire away in the lowest class. In this race, the favourite Flying Cloud was an utter disappointment while the best four-year-old on show was undoubtedly Artiste Royal. Following Fly Fly till the straight, Arion drew away to win as he liked.

In the very next race, Vikash Jaiswal’s Jester (Ace-Champagne Polka) lived up to his name as he got the better of fancied runners Studiofiftyfour and Forest Dunes in a three-way photo-finish. Akash Rajput atop the eventual winner did well to keep going even when challenged by adversaries on either flank.

There were a couple of three-year-old favourites who hoisted the winning flag without too much trouble. The first of these was Eastern Flame (Western Aristocrat-Fearless), who got the better of runaway Wimbledon in the straight to bag the upper division of the Saltarello Plate. Top-weight jockey Mahesh piloted the Richard Alford-trained filly to a straight forward triumph. In the lower division of the same race, Christopher Alford guided Arti Doctor-trained Lady Two (New Famous-Silken Dancer/ Yeravada Stud) to a smart victory over runaway Aileen and Levante.

Shafiq Khan-trained Bang Bang (Stardan- Ballad Of Glory/ Ruia Stud) produced an encore, thus defying the 4kg penalty for his last win. Apprentice Ranidan Singh allowed him to settle down behind The Stradle till the straight and took over the running smoothly. New migrant Joss tried to catch up with  the eager beaver but the whip kept him going. The favourite Francina found her 7kg penalty a little too much to handle.

James Mckeown’s I Told You Know  (Whatsthescript-Oban), a 6/1 shot, was hard ridden by jockey B Mahesh to land the spoils in the Topmost Handicap. Following bottom-weights Blazing Bullet and Adamantium till the straight, I Told You Know shot ahead under Mahesh’s stick and staved off Blazing Bullet and stablemate Mizuno who came with a second wind.