The prolific Hamish landed the rescheduled Betfred St Simon Stakes to round off an unbeaten campaign, and star in a treble for trainer William Haggas on the penultimate day of the Newmarket season.
The seven-year-old had won nine of his 17 previous starts for the Somerville Lodge handler in the colours of his father, Brian, with his clear preference for testing conditions meaning he has been raced sparingly over the course of his career.
An ambitious tilt at the King George at Ascot was considered in the summer before the ground went against him and he lined up on the Rowley Mile bidding to make it four from four for 2023 following previous wins this season at Chester, York and Goodwood.
Hamish was the 5-4 favourite to secure a seventh victory at Group Three level in the hands of Richard Kingscote – and those who took the cramped odds will have had few concerns as the market leader travelled powerfully and found plenty for pressure to beat Al Qareem by length and three-quarters.
Maureen Haggas, assistant to her husband, said: “He has had a good year, he’s been great. It is never easy when you have a horse that needs that slow ground. He has had his problems so we have to look after him and I think he has lasted this long because we look after him.
“He can be quite difficult. He got really naughty as a three-year-old and he wouldn’t go anywhere so I started riding him and I’ve ridden him ever since.
“I ride him every day and I know him back to front, but he hates Newbury so I wasn’t too displeased with the race not being down there and being here instead. He is just very argumentative, and you could spend all day arguing with him! I love him to bits, but he barely tolerates me! He is just a real star.
“I hope we see him back next year. As long as he stays in one piece he has got nothing else to do except be a racehorse, then he is going to have to be my hack, so I think he would rather be a racehorse for a while.”
Charlie Appleby’s Romantic Style (3-1) impressed in the Irish EBF “Bosra Sham” Fillies’ Stakes.
A winner on her second start at Yarmouth in September, the daughter of Night Of Thunder took a step up to Listed class in her stride as she extended a length and three-quarters clear of Adaay In Devon in the hands of Danny Tudhope.
“She did it nicely. She travelled into it very well and I thought she did it quite easily,” said Appleby’s assistant Alex Merriam.
“She has got lots of speed. She got a little bit tired at the end, but she was entitled to, as that ground was hard work. It was nice to see her step up on her last run.
“I think after her last run she was entitled to have a go at a bit of black type and she has got that now. We will put her away and see what we have got next year.”
Although Paddy Power introduced Romantic Style at 25-1 for next year’s 1000 Guineas, Merriam feels a sprinting campaign in 2024 is much more likely at this stage.
Merriam added: “I think six furlongs is her trip for the time being. She is a bonny little thing that is straightforward, and she just goes through the motions at home.
“That was only her third run so she is entitled to improve. She has won that now and she is one to look forward to next year.”
Ralph Beckett and Rob Hornby teamed up to win division one of the Betfred ‘Double Delight’ British EBF Novice Stakes with the exciting Zoum Zoum.
The gelded son of Zoustar was the 11-8 favourite to supplement a debut victory at Kempton last month and did so by two and a half lengths.
The runner-up Kikkuli, a half-brother to the great Frankel by Kingman, shaped with significant promise on his eagerly-awaited debut in second.
The Haggas team landed division two with Cieren Fallon-ridden newcomer The Reverend (9-2), while Fallon was also on board his stablemate Laafi, who struck at 20-1 in the Betfred ‘Hat Trick Heaven’ Handicap.