Strensall Stakes Victory for Rio

Gaining his first Pattern-race victory in nigh on three years, Rio De La Plata gave a thrilling performance in the Group Three Sky Bet Strensall Stakes at York.

Frankie Dettori

Frankie Dettori

After a weaker than anticipated run on a softer track at Haydock, the Saeed bin Suroor trained five year old moved powerfully during the race under the guidance of jockey Frankie Dettori.

Rainbow Peak, the race favourite gained handy headway on the stands side going down the straight, but Rio De Plata accelerated well to move into the lead with a furlong to go, with enough in reserve to defeat the favourite by a neck, followed by Kings Gambit in third place.

Winning trainer, Bin Suroor said, "He did not handle the ground at Haydock because he must have this quick ground.

"This trip is also ideal for him as it was too far at Haydock. He's a horse that has had a lot of problems, but he is a lot happier this year and always tries his best.

"There are no real plans, but we will probably try and find another Group race for him."

Owner of the runner up, Peter Savill, said, "Neil's (Callan) feeling was that this trip was probably a little bit too short and he wants a mile and a quarter.

"There's the Prix Dollar on Arc weekend over that distance and also the Champion Stakes, but he probably won't go there.

"He'll be a mile and a half horse next year."

Dettori said, "He's one of my favourite horses in the stable. He's been everywhere in the world, but he's had a tremendous amount of injuries so for him to come back and win Group races is a great achievement by Saeed and everyone in the yard.

"He's a good old servant and it's a great joy when they come back.

"It took him a year to get back and usually they don't, but he's shown tremendous character and everybody loves him.

"He knows where the winning post is so he was saving himself a bit in front but it was a good effort."

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