Brilliant Battaash flies high
A round-up of the action from day four of Glorious Goodwood after Battaash earned Nunthorpe quotes of 2/1.
Battaash was cut to 2/1 by Sky Bet for the Nunthorpe Stakes at York following a stunning display of speed in the Qatar King George Stakes at Goodwood.
The Charlie Hills-trained three-year-old had been thoroughly impressive on his two most recent starts, particularly when dominating from the front in last month's Coral Charge at Sandown.
Encountering far more testing conditions and tackling Group Two company for the first time, the son of Dark Angel was a 9/2 chance in the hands of Jim Crowley and came through the challenge with flying colours.
Take Cover, a dual winner of the race, made his usual flying start and cut out the early running, but Battaash breezed alongside at the halfway stage.
Crowley's mount soon asserted and though 9/4 favourite Profitable did his best to bridge the gap inside the last of five furlongs, Battaash was away and gone and passed the post two and a quarter lengths clear.
Profitable was a clear second ahead of Marsha in third, with Take Cover fourth.
Crowley said: "I don't think I've ridden a better sprinter. I went to ride him work at Charlie's and it was like riding a motorbike up the gallops. He was very fast.
"I had to keep a lid on him and he's got plenty left in the tank. I was worried bout the ground a little bit but Charlie wasn't. He was quite adamant he'd go on the ground. Horses in his pedigree have gone on ground with a bit of cut, but he'll probably be even more effective on better ground."
Hills said: "I was delighted with his performance. Obviously it's drying ground, but he seemed to handle it no problem at all. He's just a three-year-old who's improving and going through the ranks.
"He was up against some proper sprinters there. He just travelled with ease. It's the Nunthorpe (York) next, all being well. I think five furlongs at York should really suit him. He'll have the American horse (Lady Aurelia) to contend with and that should make it a good race."
Clive Cox was delighted with the performance of runner-up Profitable.
"I think he has been beaten by a better horse on the day. The ground is very testing but credit to the winner," he said.
"It is difficult to change gear on that ground and we just didn't find as much. We will see how he comes back but I think he has run his race."
Sir Mark Prescott, responsible for third home Marsha, said: "She ran very well. She was a tiny bit short of room when it mattered. I thought she and Profitable would have finished within inches of one and other as usual, but she (Marsha) probably wouldn't have beaten the winner, who looked very good.
"The Nunthorpe would be for her if she was all right. She is going to go to the sales in the autumn, which is a sadness for us and the 1,000 members (of owners Elite Racing Club), so it is better enjoy her while they have got her."
Poet's Word was an authoritative winner of the Betfred Glorious Stakes as Ryan Moore bossed the remainder of day four.
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With likely favourite Frontiersman a significant non-runner, the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Poet's Word was the 7/4 market leader on his first start since he was narrowly denied in the Huxley Stakes at Chester in May.
Lord Yeats took the six-strong field along for much of the mile-and-a-half contest, but faded inside the final three furlongs as Second Step and Poet's Word asserted.
Poet's Word was always getting the better of that particular argument and claimed the Group Three prize by a length and a half in the hands of Ryan Moore.
Scarlet Dragon finished strongly to take third.
Moore told ITV Racing: "He jumped out very smoothly and was very relaxed. He's got a great attitude and handled that ground well.
"I had to be patient with him and he has the makings of being a proper horse. He's a horse that can only get better. He won the handicap on this card 12 months ago. He does everything right and hopefully he'll keep progressing. I think he will be Group One class."
Bruce Raymond, racing manager to owner Saeed Suhail, said: "I think Sir Michael was a little bit apprehensive about the ground, but I thought he would handle it. He laboured a bit in the last two furlongs but I felt when Ryan gave him a whack he would pick up again.
"He has had some minor problems but nothing major. Sir Michael wanted to go to the Eclipse but Saeed Suhail didn't as he thought a mile and a half is his distance. I think the Canadian International could be an option but I don't know what Sir Michael's plans are for him. Unless you step him up there is nothing much for him here."
Eve Johnston Houghton, trainer of Scarlet Dragon, said: "I am disappointed he didn't win it but he has run well on probably the worst ground. He will probably go to the Ebor."
Moore completed a swift double as Beat The Bank stamped his class on the Bonhams Thoroughbred Stakes.
A winner on his only start for Irish trainer Darren Bunyan, the gelded son of Paco Boy, who is owned by Leicester City chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, made a successful debut for Andrew Balding at Newmarket in April.
The Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot proved a bridge too far, but he bounced back to win a Listed prize on Newmarket's July Course last month and was the 7/4 favourite stepped back up to Group Three level.
Moore had to wait for the gap to arrive, but when it did Beat The Bank went through it willingly and galloped all the way to the line to score by three lengths from Make Time.
Balding said: "He's looked very smart at home and we were all impressed with him at Newmarket. I was just worried about the ground, but he handled it well and Ryan gave him a fantastic ride.
"He's just won a Group Three. The next stage will hopefully to look for a Group Two. It's exciting."
Moore rode his third winner of the afternoon after landing the lucrative Betfred Mile aboard Master Of The World.
The David Elsworth-trained grey was still well down the field with two furlongs to run, at which stage Masham Star had set sail for home.
The strong-travelling Birchwood threw down a strong challenge at the furlong market to claim the lead, but 6/1 shot Master Of The World got a beautiful run up the far rail and got up to score by three-quarters of a length.
Tony Curtis finished with a rattle to deny Birchwood the runner-up spot, with Withernsea a close-up fourth.
Moore said: "He actually jumped out very well. We had a lovely spot but the pace was slow. After we'd gone 300 metres it got very rough. It wasn't a nice race from the six down to the four.
"They got away from me and he hit a flat spot. When he passed one he started to pick up and he stopped when he got there and he had to go again. The trainer deserves all the credit. He's a brilliant trainer. He fancied him and fair play to him. It's all down to him, really. This horse was second last year and David has produced him to win this year."
Elsworth said: "He was in wonderful form and I thought, and hoped, he would win. But you need a bit of luck in races like that and it transpired our way for a change.
"I don't think he is brave as he has got tonnes of ability, he really has. He is Group Three class and possibly even Group Two. It is nice that he has had his day in the sun.
"Ryan Moore is the man you want in your corner."
Trainer Richard Hannon said of runner-up Tony Curtis: "Trip and ground were fine for him and he is probably not far off a Group Three horse. We will stay in handicaps for the moment and there a few races at York for him. He obviously liked the ground and that opens up a few options for him."
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