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QIPCO British Champions Sprint 2012  

horse racing tipster



Mighty Maarek Takes Champions Sprint

1 Maarek 5/1
2 Hawkeyethenoo 25/1
3 Sirius Prospect 12/1
15 ran Distances: ¾l, 1¾l, hd
TIME 1m 15.99s (slow by 2.99s)

A family from Tipperary who race under ‘The Lisbunny Syndicate’ banner will be celebrating tonight after their tough five-year-old Maarek landed this Group Two sprint worth more than £140,000 to the winner.

© Caroline Norris


Among the group is landowner and breeder Peter McCutcheon, and trainer David Nagle, who is the partner of McCutcheon’s daughter.

Maarek, who was running in his tenth race of the season, was beaten when odds-on at the Curragh last week, but Nagle said: “Things didn’t work out there - they didn’t go fast enough for him and he was beaten by a very good filly in Katla who had simply lost her way. Soft ground he loves and he was in good form so we ran.

“He’s done a lot of swimming so he hasn’t got much mileage on the clock and he was fresh. I’ll let you know how this feels when it sinks in.”

Maarek, who was bred at Peter Stanley’s New England Stud and is by the sire Pivotal, was sold for just £2,500 at Doncaster in April 2010 in the spring of his three-year-old career. McCutcheon said: “I bought him as a cast-off three-year-old at Doncaster and he hadn’t run at that time. I don’t know why not - you just go to the sales and hope for the best.

“He’s an improving Pivotal and has been beautifully trained by David, who has worked him up through the ranks.

“His only disappointing run this year was at Newbury and we gave him a complete month off after that. Then he came back and won at the Curragh, ran a blinder at Ayr and had a little blip last week when not beaten far.

“On his best form he was capable of winning this - he’s beaten good horses like Gordon Lord Byron and Mayson so it’s not a surprise.”

Jamie Spencer, jockey of the three-quarter-of-a-length winner, was renewing his winning acquaintance with the Pivotal gelding after scoring in a Group Three on the Curragh in September.

Spencer said afterwards: “He’s been very consistent all season and he loves soft ground.

“I got a good lead into the race from Neil (Callan on The Cheka) and it worked out perfectly. I wouldn’t have gone to the stand side if Neil hadn’t have gone there but The Cheka was always going to give me a good lead - he was second in the July Cup on soft ground.

“I got to the front a little bit earlier than was ideal and I was a little bit worried because my lad doesn’t do a stroke in front. We hit the front at the Curragh a hundred yards out and he pulled up. If he had had something to lead him a bit further he would have won more impressively.”


Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes (Group 2)
Going: Soft (Round Course: Soft, Heavy in places)
15 ran

Starting Price
Beaten Distance
D P Nagle
J P Spencer
9st 0lbs
5 - 1
J S Goldie
G Lee
9st 0lbs
25 - 1
3/4 length
Sirius Prospect
D K Ivory
S W Kelly
9st 0lbs
12 - 1
1 3/4 length
Imperial Guest
G G Margarson
T P Queally
9st 0lbs
50 - 1
Society Rock
J R Fanshawe
K Fallon
9st 0lbs
7 - 2
The Cheka
Eve Johnson Houghton
N Callan
9st 0lbs
14 - 1
1 length
Wizz Kid
Robert Collet
O Peslier
8st 11lbs
4 - 1
3/4 length
Slade Power
E Lynam
W M Lordan
8st 13lbs
7 - 1
B J Meehan
E Ahern
9st 0lbs
33 - 1
1/2 length
Van Ellis
M Johnston
J Fanning
8st 13lbs
33 - 1
1 length
Medicean Man
J Gask
P Cosgrave
9st 0lbs
40 - 1
H A Pantall
M Guyon
8st 10lbs
8 - 1
2 3/4 lengths
R Hannon
R Hughes
9st 0lbs
20 - 1
1 3/4 length
Royal Rock
C F Wall
G Baker
9st 0lbs
33 - 1
3 1/2 lengths
Jimmy Styles
C G Cox
L Dettori
9st 0lbs
33 - 1
2 lengths


© Racehorse Photos



Jim Goldie, who trains Hawkeyethenoo, said: “I am chuffed to bits with Hawkeyethenoo. It’s always difficult when they split in to two groups as it always leaves you wondering but he has won his side well.

“We opted to go with the far side group to follow Kieren (Fallon) and Society Rock as he was the Group One horse but it didn’t work out. It was a great run and that’s him done for the year.

“We will have to run in all of these races next season.”

George Margarson, who trains Imperial Guest, said: “The ground was just a little bit against us and we have always thought Imperial Guest was a Group horse but I have kept him for the handicaps. It’s a shame it wasn’t good ground but he has run to his form with Hawkeyethenoo and he is a proper sprinter.

“That’s him done for the year and he will go to Dubai for the Carnival. We can go for Listed races and Group Threes with him next year as he will struggle off his mark in handicaps but he seems to improve every year.”

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