Chalk Stream roars to hat-trick at Ascot in colours of the Queen

Chalk Stream continued his progression with a convincing victory to complete his hat-trick for the Queen in the Lavazza Handicap at Ascot.

The three-year-old gelding had been on an upward curve this summer with wins at York and Ripon, and he stepped up again with a career-best performance.

Cieren Fallon had the William Haggas-trained son of Sea The Stars wide for a while in the early stages, as Auriferous and State Of Bliss cut out the pace.

Chalk Stream (13-2) then crossed over and slotted in nicely behind the lead, before being unleashed with a storming run to put the race to bed in a matter of strides.

He went on to win by four and three-quarter lengths from his stablemate Candleford, who was later disqualified for his jockey weighing in too light. True Courage was promoted to second with recent Racing League winner Champagne Piaff put up to fourth.

Haggas told Sky Sports Racing: “He won well. I was really pleased with him. He’s improving fast.

“He did surprise me how far he won by, but he is getting better and is behaving much better. Everything is falling into place. We’ve always liked him, he’s a beautiful mover, a very sound horse and he’s really coming good.

“This was a step up in grade today and he took it with aplomb.

“I think Her Majesty has equalled her best ever season, with lots to come, I hope.”

As for Candleford, Haggas admitted he was to blame for rider Adam Farragher weighing in 5lb light.

“That was trainer error. I unfortunately left the weight cloth on the travelling head lad’s bag instead of putting it on the horse. No wonder the horse ran so well,” said Haggas, who was fined £1,000.

“It was a disaster, I’m mortified. As soon as Adam came out and told me he had weighed in 5lb light, he didn’t have a weight cloth and I knew there was only one person to blame and sadly it had to be me.”

To add to the misery, Farragher was given a three-day ban for careless riding.

A change of tactics paid dividends for Top Secret in the Careys Foundation Supporting The Lighthouse Club Handicap.

Usually held up in his races, William Muir, who trains the four-year-old with Chris Grassick, instructed jockey Nicola Currie to make the running. It worked a treat with the 5-1 shot beating last year’s winner Documenting by half a length.

“Having lunch I said we were going to make the running. It had been difficult the first few runs for us. We had dropped him in in his races. Everything worried him,” said Muir, whose charge had won over course and distance in July.

“That day (at Ascot) I said to Rab (Havlin) make the running. He was held up, but got up and won. The next time he went to Newmarket, Rab dropped him in, they went no pace and he got beat.

“He’s going to get better. He’s a very talented horse and he just got away with the ground.

“This horse took a bit of rebuilding because he had a very bad quarter crack.”

Currie’s success was tempered by a two-day ban (September 18 and 19) for using her whip above the permitted level.

Ryan Moore finished the meeting on a high, taking the last two contests on the card courtesy of Ed Walker’s Popmaster (2-1) and the appropriately-named Mine’s A Double (11-10 favourite), trained by Clive Cox.

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