Zidane Overcomes Negatives For Last-gasp Win
1st 20 Zidane 6/1 FAV
Zidane may have been drawn in the stall no-one wanted but that didn’t
stop James Fanshawe’s charge lifting the bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup
by a short-head in a last-gasp swoop.
The five-year-old had been the long time ante-post favourite for the
six-furlong sprint until the failure of connections to attend Thursday
night’s draw saw him allotted the unwanted 11 stall, and a drift
in the market ensued.
Faith in the five-year-old returned in the build-up to the race and
he was sent off the 6/1 favourite.
Punters were rewarded as Jamie Spencer brought Zidane with a storming
late charge to deny last year’s winner Borderlescott in the final
stride of a breath-taking contest.
A delighted Fanshawe said of missing the draw: “It’s a bit
embarrassing and I’ve had a lot of stick as you can imagine. It
probably turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
“He actually worked badly on Wednesday in his last blow-out and
I was worried about the ground too. I rang the owners and said we probably
shouldn’t run but they insisted and then we missed the draw.
“The owners have always gone to the Stewards’ Cup draw in the past and we all thought it was Friday and so no-one really questioned that it might actually be on Thursday.”
Zidane was keeping up a family tradition in the bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup
as both his sisters, Frizzante (4th in 2003) and Firenze (3rd in 2006)
went close for Fanshawe and owners Jan and Peter Hopper.
The trainer said: “Both his sisters, Frizzante and Firenze, were
placed in this race for us.
“He just loves to travel with something to aim at. With two furlongs
to race, if you’d asked me if I thought he was going to win I’d
have been a bit negative. I watched it on the telly and the fellow next
door said we’d won.
“We’ll probably go for black type now. He has the class to hold his own as he has a wonderful turn of foot. He’s been working with Bentley Biscuit who runs in the Group One Prix Maurice de Gheest in France tomorrow, so it’s quite exciting.”
Winning rider Jamie Spencer said: “His head went right down as
we hit the line. He’s some horse.
“I never asked him until two out. You just have to ride him like the star he is. Borderlescott found a bit more when I got to him.”
More bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup
MORE FROM THE WINNING RIDER
Jamie Spencer, the winning rider, said: “Zidane stuck to it -
I must have been 15 to 20 lengths off the leaders at half-way and he
picked them off one by one.
“I spokes to James (Fanshawe the trainer) before the race and
he was adamant that they would all go down the middle and he said make
sure you go down the middle.
“So after a 100 yards I was calling him some names and had to edge back nearer the rail.
“With the ground Zidane made up, he was always going to flatten out 100 yards from the line.
“Then his guts kicked in and he nailed them right on the lollipop.
“At Ascot things did not go right, we had a bad draw and were on the unfavoured ground.
“He’s proved himself a good horse and I would like to think
he can step up into Group company.
“When you win these big handicaps, it is like a Group race really.
“I had to give him a few cracks all right but I am sure he won’t
Race 4 - bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup
BORDERLESCOTT PIPPED IN FOLLOW-UP BID
Little but a sinew separated Zidane and Borderlescott at the finish
of this gripping sprint handicap, the £100,000 bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup.
Borderlescott, last year’s winner, led near the line, but the
photograph showed Zidane had scored by an official short-head, while
Knot In Wood and That’s Hot were half a length and a head further
behind in third and fourth. Given that only one horse has ever won back-to-back
runnings of the race it was a heroic effort by the runner-up - Sky Diver,
in 1967 and 1968, remains the sole dual winner.
After Royston Ffrench had steered Borderlescott into the place reserved
for the second, trainer Robin Bastiman admitted: “I was spot on
the line and I thought he’d won it. He was just beaten and I hate
being second. It would have been nice to win it two year’s running,
but he’s run his heart out. He’s only small.
“The Ayr Gold Cup is a possible, and the owner’s from Scotland,
but there’s also a Listed race at Newmarket at the end of the month.
He’s a bit better than a handicapper - I tried him in the best
and he wasn’t up to Group One, but it may be a different ball game
next year when he could start Listed and work his way up.”
Richard Fahey, trainer of Knot In Wood, expressed surprise that those
jockeys drawn high had elected to come back towards the stands’ rail.
Fahey said: “He’s run a blinder and Paul [Hanagan] was delighted
with him. He said that if he’d been drawn a bit lower - in the
middle where no one wanted to be [when the draw was made] - he’d
have won. He had to follow them across because you can’t race on
“The race didn’t go to plan, but that’s racing. It was quite a strange race.”
“I just hope the handicapper drops him because he’s due to go up another 6lb. He has to have a stalls test now so there are no plans at the moment, but if the handicapper doesn’t drop him he’ll have to go into Pattern company.”
3.55pm bluesquare.com STEWARDS’ CUP
1) ZIDANE (Jan & Peter Hopper) James Fanshawe
5-9-01 Jamie Spencer  6/1 Fav
27 ran Non-Runner: Excusez Moi (withdrawn not under
Winning trainer:-Name: Fanshawe, James Robert Date
of birth:6/8/62. Date of first licence:1990 First winner: Black Sapphire,
Salisbury, May 8, 1990 Previous Occupation: Assistant to Michael Stoute
and David Nicholson. Wins in a season (1990-2006): 18; 22; 28; 34;
24; 29; 22; 23; 52; 46; 40; 38; 58; 46; 44; 43; 46 Number of horses
in training (1990-2007): 32; 51; 78; 71; 82; 76; 62; 59; 58; 65; 98;
87; 84; 110; 106; 105; 103; 101 Wins in 2007: 21 Major wins include:
Eclipse Stakes (1991 Environment Friend), Dante Stakes (1991 Environment
Friend), Prix Kergorlay (1998 Arctic Owl), Jockey Club Stakes (1998
Arctic Owl), Prix du Cadran (1998 Invermark), Bonusprint Stakes (1999
Arctic Owl), Irish St Leger (2000 Arctic Owl), Fillies’ Mile (2002 Soviet Song), Royal Hunt Cup (2003
Macadamia), Falmouth Stakes (2003 Macadamia, 2004 & 2005 Soviet Song),
Darley July Cup (2004 Frizzante), Sussex Stakes (2004 Soviet Song), Blue
Square Stewards’ Cup (2007 Zidane) Trains at Pegasus Stables, Newmarket,
Suffolk Other details: National Hunt successes include Champion Hurdle
(1992 Royal Gait and 2002 Hors La Loi III) Royal Ascot Wins (6): Royal
Hunt Cup (2003 Macadamia, 2006 Cesare), Buckingham Palace Stakes (2004
Unscrupulous), Queen Alexandra Stakes (2005 Cruzspiel), Windsor Forest
Stakes (2006 Soviet Song), Britannia Handicap (2006 Sir Gerard) First
Goodwood winner: Stylish Senor (July 30, 1991 - Gordon Stakes) Goodwood
wins: 27 (7 at July Meeting).
Winning jockey:-Name: Spencer, James (Jamie) Peter Date of Birth: 08/06/1980 British Classic Wins: St Leger (2003 Brian Boru) Achievements: Champion Jockey in 2005 with 162 wins that Turf season. First jockey since 1885 to complete the Autumn Double (2006 Formal Decree and Detroit City) Major wins include: Cambridgeshire (2006 Formal Decree), Cesarewitch (2006 Detroit City), Champion Stakes (2005 David Junior), Dubai Duty Free (2006 David Junior), Eclipse Stakes (2006 David Junior), Falmouth Stakes (2003 Macadamia), Irish 1,000 Guineas (1998 Tarascon, 2002 Gossamer), Jockey Club Stakes (2002 Marienbard), Lockinge Stakes (2007 Red Evie), Matron Stakes (Red Evie), Moyglare Stud Stakes (2000 Sequoyah), Nunthorpe Stakes (2002 Kyllachy), Prix de l’Abbaye (2006 Desert Lord), Tattersalls Gold Cup (2004 Powerscourt), Weatherbys Champion Bumper (2002 Pizarro), William Hill Sprint Cup (2005 Goodricke), totesport Cambridgeshire (2006 Formal Decree), Blue Square Stewards’ Cup (2001 Guinea Hunter, 2007 Zidane) Wins in Britain (1998-2006): 3, 8, 78, 112, 86, 102, 27, 180* (*Champion Jockey), 155 Other details: Champion apprentice in Ireland 1999. Stable jockey to Aidan O’Brien in 2004, now freelance in Britain Wins in Britain in 2007: 115 Royal Ascot wins: (13) St James’s Palace Stakes (2007 Excellent Art), Coventry Stakes (2001 Landseer), Britannia Handicap (2003 New Seeker), Queen Mary Stakes (2004 Damson), Hampton Court Stakes (2004 Moscow Ballet), King Edward VII Stakes (2004 Five Dynasties), Albany Stakes (2005 La Chunga, 2007 Nijoom Dubai), Windsor Forest Stakes (2006 Soviet Song), Royal Hunt Cup (2006 Cesare), Sandringham Handicap (2006 Red Evie), Britannia Handicap (2006 Sir Gerard), Queen Alexandra Stakes (2007 Enjoy The Moment) First Goodwood win: Rizerie (Celer et Audax Maiden Fillies’ Stakes, June 30, 2000) Goodwood wins: 30 (7 at Festival Meeting)
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