Dirar Takes Home Totesport Ebor

Following on from Sesenta last year, the totesport Ebor will be travelling to Ireland again from York with a victory by Gordon Elliott charge Dirar, steered by Jamie Spencer.

Gordon Elliott

Gordon Elliott

The winning duo were stuck in the middle of Rosika and Bridge Of Gold around a furlong out, staying on well to hit the front inside the final furlong, holding on to defeat runner up Rosika by a length and a quarter, with third placed Bridge of Gold back by a further short head.

"The Grand National was brilliant but I probably didn't appreciate it as I was young at the time. We'll make sure we enjoy this one," said winning trainer Elliott.

"The plan was to run in the Galway Hurdle, where he ran well behind Overturn, then to come here and then look at going to Dubai before having another go at the Galway Hurdle.

"He was a cheap buy but he has been improving all the way."

Commenting on the improvements seen, Elliott stated, "It's great because we have good staff at home, some good lads around us and some good owners and that's what it's all about.

"I'm a jumps man really and we're off to Killarney tomorrow, then Perth on Saturday. You just have to keep yourself in the best class and the horses in the right class."

Jockey Jamie Spencer said, "This is the second time I've won this race, but I should have won about nine as I was beaten on one of Luca's, should have won on one of Philip Hobbs' and got placed on one of Aidan O'Brien's to name three," he said.

"York's been very kind to me and I've won basically all the races they have here.

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"This Festival is named after the Ebor, not the Nunthorpe or Yorkshire Oaks and that's why it's so important."

He added, "I was further back than I wanted to be and I wasn't getting a run, but this meant the horse was reserving enough energy for later in the race.

"He's just a little pony, but he's very brave and generous and his experience in a big field was a help."

Kieren Fallon was aboard the runner up Rosika and trainer Sir Michael Stoute said, "She's so honest and she's run a very good race.

"She does have some black type so the aim for the rest of the season will be to get some more."

Bridge of Gold handler, Mikael Magnusson said of his charge,"We thought he'd win. George Baker said if there was more cut in the ground, he would definitely have won.

"We expected him to run very well as he had been working so well at home, but he came back from Dubai with a bug so he hadn't run for 174 days.

"The handicapper had dropped him 3lb since, so we knew he was well handicapped too.

"He might go for the Canadian International now, as a mile and a half will be his trip. Make no mistake, he's a very nice horse."