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Friday 5 April 2013

Up a bit, down a bit

Last Saturday saw a number of sprints to wet the appetite for the coming weeks ahead. At Doncaster Thunderball kicked off affairs by winning the 6f Class 2 Handicap by one length from Spinatrix with King Of Jazz back in third. The wining trainer Scott Dixon was confident that his horse would run well and as a result of his win he has been raised 5lb to a mark of 96, with the second up 2lb to 94 and the third, who went off fav, remaining on 87. The going was officially soft(7.1) and the time of the race was 1m.13.71s which was over 2 seconds faster than Annunciation had recorded the previous week. Of those behind Shropshire did well from stall 10 coming from behind and he remains on 96. The handicapper altered very few marks behind him and he dropped all horses who finished from 7th to 16th 1lb even though several lengths covered them all.

Jack Dexter did as expected on his step up out of handicap company on going that he has excelled on already and duly won the Cammidge Trophy over 6f by half a length from Ayr Gold Cup winner Captain Ramius. The winner has been raised 7lb to a mark of 109, whilst the second has gone up 1lb to 107. The time of the race was 0.8 secs slower than the Class 2 Handicap. The winning trainer says that he is likely to keep him and Hawkeyethenoo apart in their races and the latter heads for the Abernant at Newmarket. The handicapper summed the race up below on his blog post on the BHB website :

After Jack Dexter ran out an impressive winner of last year’s Ayr Bronze Cup there was a lot of talk of whether he could emulate Roman Warrior’s achievement in 1975 and become the first Scottish-trained winner of the Gold equivalent, writes Stewart Copeland.
However based on his reappearance success in the 6f listed William Hill – New iPad App Cammidge Trophy, loftier prizes up the sprint ladder may be on the agenda instead.
A smaller field than usual lined up for the Cammidge, but it still contained a group of horses proven at this level who’d provide strong opposition to Jack Dexter in his attempt to land his first listed prize.
He answered the challenge in impressive fashion, travelling well just off the pace before asserting around a furlong out and kept up to his work to prevail by half a length from last year’s Ayr Gold Cup winner, Captain Ramius. In third a further length behind was Our Jonathan, victorious in the 2011 version of the Ayr showpiece.
With the second and third both proven under the conditions there’s every reason to view Jack Dexter’s win in a positive light, which means an improvement in his rating from 102 to 109. That has Captain Ramius running to 107, a similar level to his performance in the Ayr Gold Cup, and Our Jonathan reproducing his pre-race rating of 105.
Jack Dexter’s 109 is the highest rating I’ve allocated to the winner of the Cammidge since Les Arcs in 2006, and he went on to complete a Group 1 double in the Golden Jubilee and July Cup. No doubt the connections of Jack Dexter will be dreaming he can follow a similar path.

At Musselburgh on Saturday Oldjoesaid rolled back the years to take the 5f Class 4 Handicap by 2 1/2 lengths from Cadeaux Pearl. The winner had the race run to suit and going he likes and therefore 7lb rise may be a little bit harsh if the fine weather happens to stay around.

Tangerine Trees won the Borderlescott Sprint Trophy over 5f beating Kingsgate Choice by a neck. Hamish McGonagall was lumbered with big weight 10.2 and was giving the winner over a stone which must have made it impossible for him to win. Of those behind Bapak Chinta, who Kevin Ryan thought was one of some potential at the begining of last season, was dropped 6lb by the handicapper to 99.

The concluding race at Musselburgh went to Move In Time who has switched stables to David O'Meara and he continued his knack of improving horses from other yards much in the same was as David Nicholls used to do. He beat Middleham Park's Come On Dave by an eased down 5 lengths and there must have been some banter between connections as Middleham Park have a number of horses traind by O'Meara. He has been raised 10lb to 95 but the way he won suggests he may be winning again soon.