• Chief of Command wins The Nilgiris Derby Stakes (Gr.1)
  • Chief of Command wins Nilgiris 2000 Guineas (Gr.2)
  • Windsor Forest wins The Nilgiris 1000 Guineas (Gr.3)
SERJEANT AT ARMS PROVES THAT HE IS THE REAL BOSS
BANGALORE
By Ikram Khan
Sunday 11 Jun 2017
Mr Vispi R Patel & trainer S S Attaollahi leading Serjeant At Arms (A Sandesh Up), winner of The Krishnaraja Wadiyar Cup

The best horse in the campus, Serjeant at Arms recorded his second straight success and will add many more plums before the curtains are brought down this summer. The Sulaiman Attaollahi ward is in a class of his own over a mile and he confirmed this again on Sunday, winning the Krishnaraja Wadiyar Cup without needing to step on the gas. The Arjun Manglorkar schooled Aster Rose in receipt of nine kilos from the champion would have extended the champion had Neeraj Rawal not got into a pocket in the final furlong but the fact remains that he wouldn’t have beaten the `Serjeant’ who has not lost a race at his parent-centre. The Indian Derby winner Hall Of Famer who had caught the eye in a mock race performed below par and it will take the big grey some time to regain the form he was in early this year.

The principal added attraction, the V T Velu Memorial Cup on paper was a straight fight between the topweighted Bold March from Karthik Ganapathy’s yard and the Arjun Manglorkar schooled Fabulous. Star Cracker a trifle short on preparation was the third contestant in with only an outside chance.

In their last head to head clash during the Indian Turf Invitation Cup week-end, Bold March had beaten Fabulous by a solitary length, both racing almost on level handicap over a mile. On Sunday, the Karthik Ganapathy ward was giving two kilos to the Arjun ward and since he had beaten him by a length last time, again it was more or less level pegging and that’s the reason why most reckoned that it will be a close affair. But that was not to be. Fabulous romped home in style while Bold March despite Sandesh guiding his fortunes was struggling and at the end was not sighted. El Fenix edged out That’s My Class to gain the runner-up berth while Star Cracker came home fourth.  

The Speaker’s Trophy split into two divisions saw the five to one shot Miniver Rose come up trumps in the upper division, making every post a winning one in the hands of Prashanth Dhebe. Cold Frontier warmed up after Miniver Rose had established a winning lead and only could bridge the gap. Animal King caught the eye while finishing third ahead of Aeisir while the favourite Malana raced in patches thanks to Pradeep Choluhan  who gingerly partnered the public choice in the sprint trip.

The lower division of the event was claimed by the second in demand at the betting ring, Louisiana from Faraz Arshad’s yard. The winner after quickly hitting the front soon after the big field of 14 runners came under the starter’s flag hung on to score from the well backed Gandharva. Surf Romance saddled by Parvathi Byramji took the third spot.

On a day most favourites took a back seat, the Arjun Manglorkar schooled Satinette justified her top billing in the lower division of the Flirting Vision Plate. The Narayan Gowda camp who had pulled of a successful gamble on Fire Rainbow on Saturday tried to repeat the act on Ira, but this time it flopped, Ira only managing to finish fourth.

The upper division of the event was claimed by the ten to one shot Opening Act from trainer Azhar Ali’s yard. Anjar Alam piloted Opening Act to the best of his ability, jumping out well from a bad draw (13) to sprint in front and then gallantly peg back the belated effort of Dancing Princess close home. The favourite Campari Girl from Irfan Ghatala’s yard who was backed to the exclusion of all her rivals flashed home late on the scene and could not even save place money.

The Neil Darashah-trained Mayweather was fancied most in the New Market Plate but considering it was the June weather, sun playing hide and seek behind the dark clouds resulting in small spells of rain, the public choice may have decided to wait for the right weather. The friendless Amalfi Coast shocked the followers of form returning Rs 2,236 on a tenner at the tote window.  Flying Bullet finished second ahead of Splendid Brave while Mayweather came home fourth.

Another favourite from Gregory Sandhu’s yard bit the dust. Ravelnation was fancied most in the Chettinad Stud Plate but after streaking ahead at the top of the straight, the favourite failed to snuff out the challenge of the ten to one shot Amazing Desire piloted by apprentice Rayan Ahmed. Silver Legend finished a creditable third and is one for the notebook.

Star Line was fancied strongly to score in the concluding event but the favourite was never in the hunt and eventually finished a poor fourth. The Hyderabad hopeful Mega Million from trainer Leo D’Silva’s yard surprised most in the hands of Naresh. A Hearttoremember did well to finish second ahead of Parting Shot.