The Tin Man shows heart
The Tin Man fired Tom Queally back into the big time by emulating his half-brother Deacon Blues in winning the Qipco British Champions Sprint at Ascot.
The Tin Man ridden by Tom Queally wins the QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes
Trained by James Fanshawe, just like Deacon Blues, The Tin Man was supplemented into the race last year but could only finish fourth.
An interrupted campaign has seen him win only once but he chased home Quiet Reflection at Haydock in the Sprint Cup, suggesting he was up to this class.
Quiet Reflection was fancied to win a third Group One of the season for Karl Burke, but she never threatened to get involved.
French raider Signs Of Blessing stole a march with two furlongs to run and went two lengths clear, but with 100 yards to go he was running on empty.
Queally delivered 13-2 chance The Tin Man widest of all and he struck by a length from Ayr Gold Cup runner-up Growl (50-1), with the winner of that race, Brando, in third and Signs Of Blessing fourth.
It was a particularly sweet moment for Queally, who since the retirement of Frankel has been absent from the limelight at the big meetings.
Queally said: "I've always felt he was potentially the best horse in the field and he proved to be. He just needs cover, thankfully he got it and proved how good he is.
"It's a special day for the team. I've probably got more of a kick out of this winner than any of the big winners I've had – when you go through a bit of a drought it means a bit more.
"My whole family will get a buzz out of this."
Fanshawe said: "All year it has been stop-start with him, he had a problem in the spring and I've not been able to get him ready.
"We didn't have the smoothest run going to (Royal) Ascot, then we had a small problem after that and before his next race we had the coughing.
"My son Tom rides him out every day so it has been a good team effort and it's great when you think they are right and they perform like that.
"He's owned by a syndicate set up by my wife, there are 10 shares and it enables people to get involved in a horse like this. It's great that he's a half-brother to Deacon Blues who won this in 2011.
"It was a hot race, I walked the course and in the past you've wanted to be drawn high but I was quite happy we were low today."
Fanshawe added: "It's great for Tom (Queally), he's been a big help, he was really cool, he rode a beautiful race and it's great for him to ride a Group One winner again."
Richard Fahey said of Growl: "You don't realise how hard it is to win the Ayr Gold Cup! It was a cracking run, it didn't look like it was a fluke, Graham (Lee) said he was happy. I'm not saying he should have won but he didn't get a clear passage.
"It was not a surprise, I thought he'd win the Ayr Gold Cup, he ran well and is a typical sprinter – some days they do it and some they don't.
"We just might take him to Dubai, he's a legend of a horse."
Kevin Ryan said of Brando: "He's had 16 runs and has already won over £300,000 in prize-money. Tom (Eaves) just felt the ground dried out a little bit and if the rain had come and it was easy ground it could have made all the difference.
"Considering where he started from this season, to run in this level of race at this time of year, shows how far he's come. He's had a long season and will be exciting next season.
"He proved that if you win an Ayr Gold Cup off top weight you are top class."