Balmoral Handicap (sponsored By Qipco)
(British Champions Series)
Handicap, Ascot 16:40
£250,000 added,
3yo plus, 1m, Class 2   
Saturday 19th October 2019

1 Escobar 16/1
2 Lord North 3/1F
3 Mitchum Swagger 28/1
4 Glen Shiel 18/1
20 ran NR: Dunkirk Harbour Distances: 2¼l, 1l, ¾l
Time: 1m 45.80s (slow by 7.20s)

Sporting the silks of a dart board, Adam Kirby produced a finish 'Mighty' Michael Van Gerwen would be proud of as he steered 16/1 shot Escobar to victory in the concluding race on QIPCO British Champions Day, the Balmoral Handicap.
 
Trained by David O'Meara, the five-year-old powered home under Kirby to score by two and a quarter-lengths in the mile event.
 
Escobar was second in the race last year and connections were delighted with today's performance.
 
O'Meara, who took the race with Lord Glitters in 2017, said: "It looked for a long way like Escobar was getting stopped, but he is a very classy horse on his day. 
 
"He was second in this last year when Sharjah Bridge just got him late on, but I did not think he would go on this very soft ground to be honest. 
 
"Escobar travels very well and Adam probably didn't have to properly go for him until inside the final furlong. He has the talent for Group races but isn't always the hardiest. 
 
"We won this race two years ago with Lord Glitters, second last year with Escobar, and won it again this year. It is a good race for us."
 
Kirby was delighted to win such a big prize on British racing's biggest stage and said: "Escobar is a lovely horse to ride and I ride him quite often. He likes to be ridden cold and was second here last year, and so he had the form to run a big race, but the ground was a bit of a worry.
 
"The pace is key. There was a nice gallop but it wasn't frantic and there weren't many lengths between the entire field. When he started to bring me there it was a great feel and he finished off well. It's a great place to ride winners and fair play to David O'Meara, and full credit to Escobar too. He runs in a lot of these big handicaps and sometimes he's unlucky because of the way he has to be ridden, but today he wasn't and he's had his big day."

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Balmoral Handicap (sponsored By Qipco)
£250,000 added, 3yo plus, 1m, Class 2
20 ran
Going: Heavy

POS (DRAW) DIST HORSE AGE WGT TRAINER JOCKEY SP
1 (21)      Escobar 5 9-6 David O'Meara Adam Kirby 16/1
2 (20) 2¼ Lord North 3 9-8 John Gosden Frankie Dettori 3/1F
3 (4) 1 Mitchum Swagger 7 9-6 Ralph Beckett Rob Hornby 28/1
4 (7) ¾ Glen Shiel 5 9-1 Archie Watson Hollie Doyle 18/1
5 (15) 1¾ Waarif 6 8-12 David O'Meara Daniel Tudhope 18/1
6 (19) nse Kynren 5 9-8 6ex David Barron Ben Curtis 6/1
7 (10) ¾ So Beloved 9 8-13 David O'Meara James Doyle 66/1
8 (22) ¾ Pogo 3 9-2 Charles Hills Kieran Shoemark 66/1
9 (6) nk Chiefofchiefs 6 8-13 Charlie Fellowes Richard Kingscote 50/1
10 (11) 1¾ Biometric 3 8-13 Ralph Beckett Harry Bentley 8/1
11 (13) nk Dark Vision 3 8-12 Mark Johnston William Buick 16/1
12 (1) nk Clon Coulis 5 9-0 David Barron Jamie Spencer 13/2
13 (17) ½ Saltonstall 5 8-12 Adrian McGuinness Jason Watson 50/1
14 (12) 4½ Amedeo Modigliani 4 8-13 A P O'Brien Donnacha O'Brien 7/1
15 (23) 7 Arctic Sound 3 9-6 Mark Johnston Silvestre De Sousa 40/1
16 (5) 2¼ Circus Couture 7 8-11 Jane Chapple-Hyam J F Egan 66/1
17 (16) ¾ Flaming Spear 7 9-8 Dean Ivory Joey Haynes 28/1
18 (14) 6 Coolagh Forest 3 9-0 6ex Richard Fahey Paul Hanagan 11/1
19 (2) 37 Kick On 3 9-6 John Gosden Oisin Murphy 11/1
20 (3) 4½ Commander Cole 5 9-3 Saeed bin Suroor Cieren Fallon 28/1
NR 8 (9) 401741 Dunkirk Harbour 3 9-5 6ex A P O'Brien NON RUNNER