bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes
|Group 3, Sandown 14:25
1m 1f 209y, Class 1
|Friday 27th April 2018|
1 Crystal Ocean EvsF
2 Fabricate 4/1
3 Morando 7/1
6 ran NR: Spark Plug Distances: shd, 1¼l, ¾l
Time: 2m 11.48s (slow by 6.18s)
Crystal Ocean just sneaks it from Fabricate
© Racehorse Photos
Dual Group One winner Ulysses was successful for Sir Michael Stoute 12 months ago and the Newmarket handler saw the Group Three prize head his way once more thanks to a son of Sea The Stars, Crystal Ocean.
Sitting close to the early pace, which was set by First Sitting, last year’s St Leger runner-up moved on with the Queen’s Fabricate approaching the two-furlong pole.
Although briefly headed, the even-money favourite dug deep under Ryan Moore to get up close to the line and prevail by a short head.
Assistant trainer James Horton said: “Ryan was very pleased with him. This will sharpen him up a lot for some big targets later on in the year.
“It is nice knowing he is as effective over 10 as well 12 furlongs. It gives us a few more options.
“I think he had a good heave at the furlong pole. He is all guts and heart this horse. That has probably got him through it rather than fitness.
“He won very impressively at Goodwood on horrible ground, but I think he is better on better ground. I think the key to him is that he is such a brave horse.”
A return to the Esher track appears to be on the cards for runner-up Fabricate, according to his trainer Michael Bell.
The Newmarket handler said: “That was a fantastic run in defeat. He just got outstayed in the last 100 yards. My first inclination is to come back for the Brigadier Gerard.”
Bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes
£70,000 added, 4yo plus, 1m 1f 209y, Class 1
Going: Good to Soft, Good in places
|Pos||Dr||D||Horse SP||Jockey Weight||Trainer||Age|
|1st||(2)||Crystal Ocean Evsf||R L Moore
|Sir Michael Stoute||4|
|2nd||(7)||s.h||Fabricate 4/1||James Doyle
|M L W Bell||6|
|3rd||(1)||1¼||Morando (FR) 7/1||Oisin Murphy
|A M Balding||5|
|4th||(6)||¾||Almodovar (IRE) 7/1||Kieran Shoemark
|5th||(5)||2||What About Carlo (FR) 8/1||Charles Bishop
|Eve Johnson Houghton||7|
|6th||(3)||13||First Sitting 25/1||G Mosse
|C F Wall||7|
|NR||(4)||Spark Plug (IRE)||Tom Marquand
|B J Meehan||7|