• Punjabi Girl wins The Fillies Championship Stakes (Gr.1)
  • Sir Cecil wins The Colts Championship Stakes (Gr.1)
By Madhukar Bhagawan
Saturday 29 Jul 2017
Trainer M Srinivas Reddy (Deputising trainer S S F Hassan) leading That's My Darling (Md Ismail Up), winner of The Sri S Ramakrishnam Raju Memorial Cup

S.S.Faisal Hassan trained That’s My Darling (Mr.Mellon-Highly Fashionable / Ruia Stud) made the best of the feather weight she carried on her back with apprentice Md Ismail, to notch the Sri S Ramakrishnam Raju Memorial Cup that featured Saturday’s races at Hyderabad. Sent off at longer odds That’s My Darling braced the rear bunch for most part of the race. Net Champ assumed command before turning for home and was travelling well as they came into the final furlong of the sprint event. The rest of the runners spread out across the track and That’s My Darling was the widest of them all. Hassan’s ward along with Vallee Secrete started to bridge the gap over the leader in the last 200 metres and the three of them went past the winning post abreast. That’s My Darling turned out to be ‘one’ for the connections, pulling it off by a short-head from Net Champ and Vallee Secrete. Morning Miracle made it to the frame in another close finish. Tiger was a non-starter in the race.

While trainer Faisal Hassan saddled a double having won earlier with Golden Hope in the maidens’, trainer K.V.Srinivas also sent out a double through Dance Oh Dance and Mirfield both at lucrative odds. Mirfield (Win Legend-Integrate) won impressively in the Warangal Plate.  The fancied Sweet March was up in front from the start while Mirfield raced a handy fourth with the field of eight covered within three lengths. Entering the last 400 metres Mirfield gathered momentum from the outside and headed past Sweet March without any fuss and stretched out easily to the post. Sweet March who was beaten fair and square managed to hold on to the second place from Ashwa Ashoka while George Cross finished another length and a half adrift in fourth. Negress Pearl was withdrawn near the gates.

Dance Oh Dance (Lord Admiral-Dance N Celebrate) made an impressive debut in the division I of the Rani Laxmi Bai Plate. The chestnut filly raced handily behind the leader Halo’s Princess and once on the straight went past and kicked on easily even as the favourite Reunion made a desperate bid. Exclusive Striker and Halo’s Princess finished third and fourth respectively.

The persistence of jockey Akshay Kumar on Golden Hope (ravel-Calliope) paid dividends in the lower division. Faisal had brought the youngster to Bangalore for a stint during summer and the gelding seems to have benefitted by it. Rapidamente was installed as the favourite and the grey colt had corrected its erratic running habit this time by getting to the front very early in the race and racing close to the rails. Inside the last 300 metres Starlight started to put pressure from the inside and Good Strike headed for a brief while from the inside. Golden Hope was being ridden hard and the gelding did well to raise a winning gallop in the closing stages despite veering out slightly under pressure. Starlight took the second spot while Rapidamente and Good Strike finished in that order in a close finish for the minor places. Dream Catcher was withdrawn before the race.

Anupam Sharma trained Act In Time (West Virginia-Akiydath) who was knocking at the door and missed out by a slender margin in the previous outing justified the favouritism in the Auxiliary Plate. The 5 years old took a good jump from an inward draw and settled in second when Matica showed some early speed to show the way. Passing the 300 metres board Act In Time started to get stronger from the outside and was soon well ahead. Charming Beauty made a vain bid in the last 100 metres but Act In Time was safely home. Apache Gal and Kireeti finished third and fourth respectively.

S.A.Shehzad Abbas trained Penthesilea (Opportunist-Aloisia) who had lost out narrowly a fortnight ago did well to score its maiden win in the division II of the Cupid Plate. Racing in fourth till turning for home Penthesilea improved from the outside despite running five off the fence and got home first half a length ahead of Vijays Delight who came in with a late burst. Mastaani and Take A Bow filled the frame in that order. Zensational was a non-starter in the race.  

Trainer K.Satheesh kept his score board ticking with a win in the higher division through 7-1 shot Surprise Party. The filly rushed to get to the lead as the gates opened and was up in front all the way. War Cry was ridden hard on the straight to get the better from the outside but failed in its effort and had to settle for the runner-up berth. Naamdhari was finishing on in third while Invasion ended up fourth. Good Taste was a non-starter.