Sky Bet Ebor
Heritage Handicap, York 15:35
£500,000 added,
3yo plus,
1m 5f 188y, Class 2   
Saturday 21st August 2021

Horses 468x60 Jpg

1 Sonnyboyliston 10/1
2 Quickthorn 16/1
3 Alounak 33/1
4 Shanroe 20/1
20 ran NR: Hamish, Mekong
Distances: hd, 1½l, 1¼l Time: 2m 56.10s (fast by 0.80s)

Johnny Murtagh sent out Mutual Regard to win the handicap feature back in 2014, and Sonnyboyliston fended off Quickthorn to once again take the prize back to County Kildare.

Jockey Ben Coen bided his time through the early stages, sitting in mid division while Blue Cup and Humanitarian raced a couple of lengths clear at the head of affairs.

It looked as though Blue Cup had a handy advantage at the top of the straight, but he quickly dropped away, leaving Quickthorn in front.

However, Coen was poised to challenge down the middle of the track – and he edged in front in the final furlong, with 16-1 shot Quickthorn giving his all but eventually falling just short in a photo.

Alounak kept on for third, with Shanroe fourth. Favourites Ilaraab and Mt Leinster both finished down the field in heavy rain on the Knavesmire.

Murtagh said: “It’s all the hard work everybody does at home. It’s me knowing the kind of horse it takes to win these races, like when I was riding in them.

“I’m going back to my experience as a jockey. That’s the kind of horse we need for this track or that race.

“The last time he ran here he ran very well, and I liked the way he came home. He came on for that run, and that gave us confidence.

“He’s out of a good staying mare. Fair play to Ben. He was good.”

Trainers Quotes

Sonnyboyliston is entered in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger at the Curragh on September 12, while Murtagh also nominated him for the Melbourne Cup at Flemington on November 2.

An Australian trip has not been ruled out, but Murtagh’s sights are set on the Curragh for now.

He said: “I have him in the Irish St Leger, and we’ll have to think about that first now before we consider Australia.

“Last year when he won (on) Irish Champions weekend over a mile and a quarter, I always thought when he stepped up in distance he’d get better.

“At the start of the year I thought he might end up in the Ebor. It doesn’t always work out like that, but today it did – by a head.

“He is a pretty good stayer. He has to improve a lot for the Irish St Leger – but he’s probably going to get a hike for that. It’s the next logical step.

“There have been a lot of people looking at him before today, and I’m sure they will be on again after today, but my plan is to go for the Irish St Leger.”

Sky Bet Ebor Heritage Handicap
£500,000 added, 3yo plus, 1m 5f 188y, Class 2
20 ran
Going: Good

1 (14)     Sonnyboyliston 4 9-8 J P Murtagh Ben Coen 10/1
2 (3)
hd Quickthorn 4 9-3 Hughie Morrison Jason Hart 16/1
3 (10)
Alounak 6 9-8 Andrew Balding Silvestre De Sousa 33/1
4 (9)
Shanroe 7 9-1 Karl Thornton Robbie Colgan 20/1
5 (12)
2 Max Vega 4 9-6 Ralph Beckett Hector Crouch 25/1
6 (5)
Roberto Escobarr 4 9-7 William Haggas Kevin Stott 9/1
7 (23)
Away He Goes 5 9-11 Ismail Mohammed Dane O'Neill 18/1
8 (22)
1 Pablo Escobarr 5 9-6 William Haggas Adam Farragher 33/1
9 (17)
¾ Tribal Craft 5 9-4 Andrew Balding David Probert 10/1
10 (11)
¾ Global Storm 4 9-4 Charlie Appleby William Buick 12/1
11 (1) ¾ Euchen Glen 8 10-2 Jim Goldie Paul Mulrennan 28/1
12 (7)
Makawee 6 9-1 David O'Meara David Nolan 66/1
13 (8)
On To Victory 7 9-4 Alan King Saffie Osborne 66/1
14 (19)
Fujaira Prince 7 10-0 Roger Varian Andrea Atzeni 9/1
15 (6)
½ Mirann 5 9-3 J P Murtagh Adam Kirby 10/1
16 (24)
18 Eagles By Day 5 9-11 David O'Meara Daniel Tudhope 33/1
17 (21)
5 Mt Leinster 7 9-5 W P Mullins Jason Watson 5/1JF
18 (20)
Ilaraab 4 9-11 William Haggas Kieran Shoemark 5/1JF
19 (13)
35 Humanitarian 5 9-6 John & Thady Gosden James Doyle 14/1
20 (18)
9 Blue Cup 5 9-8 David Menuisier David Egan 50/1
NR 6 (15) Hamish 5 9-8 William Haggas NON RUNNER
NR 8 (4) Mekong 6 9-8 Jamie Osborne NON RUNNER

NR 23 Live Your Dream 4 9-1 Saeed bin Suroor NON RUNNER
NR 24 Sextant 6 9-1 Keith Dalgleish NON RUNNER