Ascot 2:30, 5f Group 2 (C&G) (1), "Norfolk Stakes"
|1||Approve||16||71||4||m||W. J. Haggas||2||BOk, LdgLn Erl, H-1 +1f & 2nd Rank Sttld, Eff-2f STTR, PO, Resp-1f & ko, Ld-0.5f, ko to Ln|
|2||Reckless Reward||16||67||3||m/V||R. Hannon||6||Exc Cnd, BkWL, LdgLn Erl, Ld+0.5f SFre, Hdd+1.5f, Eff-2f Resp, PO, Resp ins-1f, PO to Ln|
|3||Excel Bolt||7||65||3||d||B. Smart||1||BkWL, X+0.5f to Stds RL, RcAlone, LdgLn+1.5f, Eff-2f Resp, ko, PO-0.5f+, SHgR-0.5f, Stall Lt|
|4||Stone Of Folca||18||64||2||J. R. Best||5||Walked TP, B-1 Design P-1, Last Erl, Fre+0.5f, Pull to Prg Hld to Hf, TvCmf-2f, Eff-1.5f+ & Ld, Ko, Stall-0.5f+ & Hdd Fd|
|5||Zebedee||5.5||62||3||d/L||R. Hannon||9||Drift 9/2, BkWL, LdgLn Erl, SPrg+2f, TvOk-2f+, Ld-2f, Eff-1.5f+ & Hdd, ko, 2nd-1f+, po ins-1f, Stall ins-0.5f, Fd Lt|
|6||Dinkum Diamond||2.75||61||3||l||H. Candy||4||BOk, H-2 Erl Drop Back, SFre+0.5f, Sttld+1f, Eff-2f, PO, Stall Lt|
|7||Emporer Hadrian (v)||25||60||5||A. P. O'Brien||3||BOk PAwk-1, H-2 +0.5f Drop Back, Eff-2f, Po, Stall-0.5f, po|
|8||Arctic Feeling||16||57||3||m/D||R. A. Fahey||10||B-1 Wd, H-1 Erl, Ngl+2f, Eff-2f & SPrg, PO ins-2f, Chal for 5th-1f+, Po, Stall ins-0.5f, Fd Lt|
|9||Al Aasifh||4||57||3||m/G||S. B. Suroor||12||Supp 7/1, BOk Wdst, H-1 +1f & 2nd Rank, Eff-2f Resp, PO, Stall ins-1f, Fd ins-0.5f|
|10||Dubawi Gold||8||48||3||m/D||M. Dods||8||Unsttl Stalls, B-1 PDv, Resp Erl, Prg+1f & LdgLn, Dv-2f+, Outpcd-2f, po, Fd ins-1f|
|11||Black Moth||33||42||3||m/V||B. J. Meehan||7||BkWL, LdgLn Erl, SPrg+1.5f & Ld, Eff-2f & Hdd, Po, Stall ins-1f, Fd-0.5f|
|12||Little Lion Man||25||27||2||m||P. W. Chapple-Hyam||11||BOk, H-3 Erl Drop Back, Ngl+2f, SOutpcd Hf, po ins-2f, Fd ins-1f, Eased-0.5f|
||6mm of watering overnight after fast conditions previous day when the fillies broke the juvenile 5f Course Record in the Queen Mary. This time 0.97s slower than the fillies with this winner carrying 3lbs more. This field run centre track after fillies ran far rail. Going Stick readings within 0.2 of each other for readings taken on either rail and centre track. One exception was Excel Bolt who went over to race on the Stands' Rail alone. Finish to 8f Heritage Handicap suggest not much bias with a stiff pace on the far rail seeing that Group 5L ahead at half but then breaking up (presume pace related) and the winner the only one to persist off the Far rail pace and nearly caught by the line of finishers stands side. An alternative reading would be that the Stands Side was an advantage and the far side walked into the trap by going too fast. Which would mean Ransom Note is a Group horse in a handicap so won anyway. All part of trying to judge what is going on a course 50 yards wide built on 18 inches of soil at various points. This race 0,93s faster than the Windsor Castle two days previously. That field raced stands side so none of the 3 x 5f juvenile races at the meeting ran dow the same strip. Go as 61.09 (Good going, Stands side) Day 1, 59.17 (GFG, Far Rail with tailwind) & 60.14 on (GFG, but after 6mm of water, race centre field).
Usable pace with main group racing Centre to Stands side in 2-3 Banks with Excel Bolt alone under the Stands' Rail. First bank of 4 within a Neck of each other at halfway with (from centre out) RR, BM, DG & Zebedee. 2nd Rank of 4 within 1-5 to 2.5L of lead as Approve, SoF, AF & AA. The DD at 3.5L of lead and racing closest ot Centre track. EH & LLM then last pair at 5-6L back.
SoF walked to the start. Purposely held up by Fallon having run too freely two days earlier in the Windsor Castle and made his effort too early. Faded late that day. Again travelled like the best horse for a lot of the race. Best forward effort inside 2F out and around 1L clear going into the last 1F but stalled into the last 0.5F again. Seems he was travelling so well he had Fallon falling into the same trap of letting him go too early. SoF has now led all three races he has been in late into the last 1F. But, then been overhauled by horses he went past to get to the lead having been behind them at halfway. Time his effort right and he is up to Group class. Owners would presumably sell him if an offer came in and trainer typically runs horses in better races as maidens to try to get them sold on. Alternatively the owners could let him iron out some Maiden field at Folkestone.
Reckless Reward in absolutely glowing condition (in way bright chestnuts only can). To the point that if you just judged horses on wellbeing and blanked form out you would have to bet on him. A big enough physical type to make that stick even in this field. Unable to raise the top level forward efforts of SoF, Zebedee & Approve (plus ExB probably) but able to extend his pace for longer to get back to 2nd late on.
Zebedee travel second best to SoF inside 2F out and able to delay his final effort as in previous runs. Solid forward effort but stalling and fading late.
Approve back to 5F having been held up over 6F in the Woodcote Stakes and unable to get involved there. Hampered in that race and then hanging as switched to make a run but still able to make forward effort. Showed similar strong finish here & unable to raise immediate pace of Zeb & SoF but then keeping on strongly into the last 1F as the faster horses stalling. Going on at finish and could be better at 6f and seems obvious Gimcrack candidate.
Dinkum Diamond smaller and natural speed horse. Held up here and racing centre track without cover. Racing a bit too freely at times. Make just an ok forward effort and perhaps just lesser class than the bigger ones here. But, still persisting to line and making ground on the stallers. Should stay further held up but worth trying letting him use his basic pace earlier in the race over 5f.
Lesser types fading off solid pace set and race spread abilities out for most part unless horses adapt their Run Styles. AF run better than final position suggests losing 2-3 places in the last 0.5F+. Another that is short of the best here but probably better using his pace leading or racing more prominently against lesser opposition.
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