Racing News: 12 July 2016

Educate At Last In John Smiths and Limato Gives A Lesson In Speed

On paper the 2016 edition of the Darley July Cup looked to be one of the strongest renewals in many a year. In reality it turned into a one horse race.

Limato Eases to July Cup

A field containing the winners of the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, Kings Stand Stakes, Commonwealth Cup and Breeders Cup Turf Sprint, amongst other Group winning performers, simply had no answers to the devastating turn of foot demonstrated by Henry Candy’s Limato.

Known as Mr Angry back at the yard, he is never too keen to be saddled prior to the race but once underway there are few who can run so quick as this son of Tagula. A winning margin of two lengths would have been far greater had he not started to make is way home to the paddocks just after the furlong marker. That nothing ever looked remotely like getting anywhere near him, despite what was a pretty severe drift across the track, is demonstrative of his superiority here.

Granted the good to firm conditions he evidently relishes, it will take a good one to stop him this season. Plans are up in the air as to where he will head next with initial mention of a tilt at the Sussex Stakes seemingly scrapped in favour of an extended break.

John Smith’s Cup

Meanwhile in the John Smith’s Cup at York, Ismail Mohammed’s seven year old Educate taught us all about the value of perseverance. This son of Echo of Light first lined up for what is one of the showpiece handicap contests of the year back in 2013, where he managed a never threatening 10th.

Undeterred, connections gave the gelding another shot at the prize in 2014, again he didn’t manage to win but fared much better in finishing a staying on fourth. Third time’s the charm perhaps in 2015 then? Well not really as an out of sorts Educate faded right out of it for his worst effort in the race to date.

Seven years old now and not having won a race of any description since September of 2013, connections of the bay surely arrived at the Knavesmire venue more in hope than expectation. Sometimes however persistence really does pay off. Given an excellent ride by the talented and resurgent Thomas Brown, Educate sat handily throughout and stayed on best off all to hold off the late challenge of the gallant mare Elbereth. Punters who kept the faith were rewarded with an SP of 18/1.

Deauville Delivers (Belmont) Derby

Looking further afield Irish Supremo Aidan O’Brien landed the big race over in the States. Having been narrowly denied in both the English and Irish Derbies by Dermot Weld’s tough and talented Harzand, O’Brien landed a Derby success at long last as Deauville would not be headed in the Belmont Derby. It may not offer quite the prestige as its European Classic namesakes, but having bagged over £450,000 in prize money, it was certainly a worthwhile trip.

Irish Oaks Awaits

The betting for the coming weekend’s major flat racing contest would suggest that O’Brien won’t have to wait very long at all for his next big race success. The Irish Oaks is the headline act at the Curragh on Saturday and it is O’Brien’s impressive Ribblesdale Stakes winner, Even Song, who is odds on favourite and others.