Sky Bet York Stakes
| Group 2, York 15:15
1m 2f 56y, Class 1
1 Bangkok 14/1
2 Juan Elcano 8/1
3 Mohaafeth 4/5F
5 ran Distances: hd, nk, 1l
Time: 2m 16.43s (slow by 8.13s)
Starting at 14-1 under David Probert, Bangkok raced in mid division and threw down his challenge in the last furlong, locking horns with race leader Juan Elcano before Mohaafeth became involved after covering ground late on.
Andrew Balding’s bay crossed the line a head in front of the former horse, with William Haggas’ 4-5 favourite Mohaafeth a further neck behind in third.
The victory is a first Group Two success for Bangkok, who is something of a globetrotter having run in a string of valuable races in the Middle East.
Probert said: “The pace of the race wasn’t overly strong early on and he likes to have a little bit of cover and he got into a nice rhythm.
“We got racing from three and a half and I couldn’t see where Jim (Crowley on Mohaafeth) was or the O’Brien horse (Armory), so I had to read the race on my own accord.
“About a furlong down, he dropped back to third, but he responded very well for pressure and got back up on the line. I’m delighted with him as it shows he has the ability.
“He’s probably been the forgotten horse as he’s shown his true form on the all-weather. He probably needed his best to win and hopefully he’ll take a big step forward.”
Speaking away from the track, Balding said: “I’m really pleased. David gave him a lovely ride and the horse deserved that. He’s so tough and consistent, talented at the same time so it’s lovely to win a nice race with him.
“Unfortunately, he’s not in the Juddmonte International so we would have to supplement him, but we’ve got some overseas targets in the autumn anyway to take on board. We’ll put everything into the mix and come up with a plan.”
Haggas said of Mohaafeth’s performance: “I thought he ran a very nice race. A disappointing result but he ran a good race.
“I learnt a bit today. I thought it was as far as he wants to go. Absolutely not a criticism but the rail was put out 43 yards and if it hadn’t been he’d have lasted. I don’t want to bring that into it at all. The winner won fairly.
“I thought our horse ran a very good race and he’s going to be fine.
“I’ve no idea where we go next. I’ll talk to the owner.”
Sky Bet York Stakes (Group 2)
£115,000 added, 3yo plus, 1m 2f 56y, Class 1
Going: Good to Firm
1 (1) Bangkok 5 9-6 Andrew Balding David Probert 14/1
2 (4) hd Juan Elcano 4 9-6 Kevin Ryan Andrea Atzeni 8/1
3 (2) nk Mohaafeth 3 8-11 William Haggas Jim Crowley 4/5F
4 (3) 1 Armory 4 9-9 A P O'Brien Seamie Heffernan 9/4
5 (5) 5½ Montatham 5 9-6 William Haggas Liam Jones 25/1