Tag Archive for: talkSPORT All-Weather 3 Year Old Championships Conditions Stakes

Desert Cop speeds to All-Weather Finals Day success

Desert Cop blitzed the opposition to win the talkSPORT All-Weather 3 Year Old Championships Conditions Stakes in fine style at Newcastle.

Andrew Balding’s son of Oasis Dream possesses a speedy pedigree and advertised his potential with a bloodless victory at Kempton in February – and it was more of the same at Gosforth Park as he landed the £150,000 contest won by some handy speedsters over the years.

After Shaquille, one of the market leaders failed to enter the stalls and was withdrawn at the start, it was Mick Appleby’s Michaela’s Boy that led the field along in the early stages.

However, Oisin Murphy aboard the 11-1 winner was always travelling smoothly tracking the pace, and having gone for home approaching the one-furlong pole, the race was soon over as a contest – with the Jeff Smith-owned colt scorching clear of the running-on 2-1 favourite Shouldvebeenaring, who stayed on into second, beaten one and three-quarter lengths.

Balding was represented by his wife Anna-Lisa, who said: “It’s always great to get winners for Jeff (Smith, owner) as he’s so enthusiastic but sadly he’s not here today. We had a disappointment in the first (race) but for Desert Cop to go and do that is fantastic.

“Oisin got off him and was very complimentary, I think it will be an exciting year for him.

“I think today was definitely going to answer questions for the trainer as to what we do in the future, so I imagine we’ll get him home and have a look at everything. Jeff is so involved – usually 20 minutes after the race he has an idea!

“He had something to find on the figures but he’d shown enough at home to warrant running”

Arabian Storm failed to fire in the opening Burradon Stakes for the team of owner, trainer and jockey, but he was reported to be none the worse after coming home ninth.

Balding added: “The first race was really disappointing as he’s a lovely horse, by Kingman out of Arabian Queen and he’s worked very well, but we’re not dealing with machines, he’s pulled up fine.”

Desert Cop and Oisin Murphy
Desert Cop and Oisin Murphy (Richard Sellers/PA)

Murphy believes there is plenty more to come from Desert Cop in the future.

He said: “Desert Cop is massively on the upgrade and that was a really good performance. I am so pleased for Jeff Smith and all his team at Littleton Stud. They do a fantastic job at breeding these horses and he is really one to look forward to.

“It was very hard to judge the form of Desert Cop’s first three starts, but we knew he was improving at home. I loved his attitude today; I still had plenty of horse at the line, and that bodes well for the future. I am not sure what Andrew’s plans are but he’s definitely on the improve and six furlongs suits him well.”

Richard Hannon was “delighted” with the effort of Shouldvebeenaring.

He said: “He might have bumped into a decent horse. He travelled very well and once again he’s run another super solid race.

“There are a lot of options with him during the year now. The owners rightfully are very pleased with him and he will be a lot of fun during the summer.”

Shouldvebeenaring bidding to add further lustre to money-spinning CV

Shouldvebeenaring goes in search of a fifth career success in the talkSPORT All-Weather 3 Year Old Championships Conditions Stakes, as enterprising owners Middleham Park Racing attempt to land a telling blow on All-Weather Championships Finals Day.

The Havana Grey colt found the scoresheet on three occasions as a juvenile and having picked up a £122,950 pay cheque when striking in a valuable sales race at York, soon scooped Listed honours at Ripon.

Respectable efforts in the Mill Reef and then back on the Knavesmire over seven furlongs followed before attentions turned to securing qualification for this £150,000 contest at Newcastle – something he achieved when winning at Southwell in January.

Shouldvebeenaring after winning at Ripon
Shouldvebeenaring after winning at Ripon (PA)

“Shouldvebeenaring looks like going off favourite and it looks like a race that is tailor-made for him on a track which suits being held up,” said Tom Palin of Middleham Park.

“I can see him running a similar race as to when he won the Goffs sales race, weaving through. I think he’s nearly top-rated and he looks to have a good chance, it’s been his target all winter.”

Julie Camacho’s Shaquille heads to Gosforth Park having won three of his four career starts and his only disappointment coming in the Acomb Stakes last summer.

Connections have kept the son of Charm Spirit fresh for a crack at this valuable six-furlong contest and are confident he can make his presence felt.

“We’ve been pleased with him,” said Steve Brown, assistant trainer and husband of Camacho.

“He quite purposely had a break after Wolverhampton which was always the intention. He’s trained well over the winter and has progressed again physically – he’s a nice, big, strong colt.

“He went to Newcastle last week to stretch his legs and have a lie of the land and have a breeze up the track.

“We’re looking forward to it, he’s a few pounds wrong with a few of the horses at the weights, but we still feel he is progressive and we’re interested to see if he can improve further.

“It will tell us which direction we should be going in and we still have an interest in going up in trip at some point – it’s on the agenda. But the stiff six is a good starting point, so we will see how it goes and go from there.

George Boughey is double-handed with recent Listed winner Perdika and Kempton scorer Danger Alert, while Kevin Ryan’s Hello Queen has won both starts so far this term, tasting success over course and distance last month.

Another recent winner in the line-up is Andrew Balding’s Desert Cop, who made huge strides when runner-up on his second start before thriving when dropped back to six furlongs, getting off the mark at the third attempt.

The speedily-bred son of Oasis Dream showed plenty of pace to put the race to bed on that occasion and David Bowe, racing manager for the Oasis Dream gelding’s owner Jeff Smith believes his blistering turn of foot could prove crucial once again.

He said: “He has progressed and I would say the six furlongs would suit him down to the ground, especially on his pedigree.

“His last run was impressive in the way he finished out his race and he looks to have plenty of speed. We’ve been really encouraged by him at home and his home work has been excellent.

“He’s a lovely horse with a very speedy pedigree and we’re hoping the six will be ideal for him.”

New Definition disappointed over a mile at Chelmsford last weekend, but trainer James Tate is prepared to put a line through that effort as he drops the otherwise consistent son of Invincible Spirit back down to six furlongs.

He said: “He seemed to improve for running a sharp seven at Lingfield twice, but the mile at Chelmsford was a disaster because he just got stuck wide all the way round.

“We’re backing him up quickly I know, but this is a stiff six at Newcastle and if Chelmsford hasn’t taken anything out of him hopefully he will be on the premises.

“He’s a very tough type and seems to take his racing well.”

Meanwhile Group One-winning jockey Robert Havlin is looking forward to partnering The X O for the first time.

Jockey Robert Havlin will partner John Ryan's The X O in the talkSPORT All-Weather 3 Year Old Championships Conditions Stakes
Jockey Robert Havlin will partner John Ryan’s The X O in the talkSPORT All-Weather 3 Year Old Championships Conditions Stakes (Mike Egerton/PA)

Although the outsider of the field, John Ryan’s colt has racked up plenty of experience in the early part of 2023, winning two of his five starts since the turn of the year.

“I rode work on The X O on Tuesday and he gave me a nice feel,” said Havlin.

“I watched some of his races back and, although last time was messy, his performances at Southwell were quite impressive.

“I think the straight track at Newcastle will play to his strengths and, even though he has a bit to find on ratings, connections are hoping for a big run.”

The field is complete by Mick Appleby’s Michaela’s Boy, who was disappointing in France last month but brings course form to the table, and Grant Tuer’s versatile Glorious Angel.