Titus turns York handicap into a procession

Connections dreaming of next year’s Ebor

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Titus was an emphatic winner of the Sky Bet Handicap at York.

Declan Carroll’s charge was an 8-1 shot on the back of finishing fourth in last month’s John Smith’s Cup on the Knavesmire, form that has been well advertised since with runner-up Thundering Blue subsequently winning a Group Two and finishing third in Wednesday’s Juddmonte International.

Titus travelled into contention with remarkable ease in the hands Ger O’Neill, with the 5lb claimer sat motionless while his rival jockeys rowed along halfway up the home straight.

The four-year-old could be called the winner a long way out and once given his head, he swiftly put distance between himself and his rivals, passing the post with four lengths in hand.

Mister Belvedere was best of the rest in second ahead of Kelly’s Dino and Pacify in third and fourth respectively.

Carroll said: “He’s had some good runs in some very good races. He was going up in trip today and has done it very well. We knew he’d improve for going up in trip.

“Ger rode him very well. He’s a good kid.”

Considering future targets, the trainer added: “There’s a handicap at Leopardstown I was looking at, but we’ll just see.

“The £1million Ebor next year sounds very good!”

Commanding Officer opened his account at the third attempt in the British Stallion Studs EBF Convivial Maiden Stakes.

Karl Burke’s youngster finished fourth on his debut here in late July before filling the runner-up spot at Haydock a fortnight ago.

He was sent off at 11-1 for what is traditionally a strong event and knuckled down well to see off Indomitable by half a length.

Burke said: “That was great. He’s has a bit of a kink to him, but he’s a lovely colt.

“He’s more a horse for next year, to be honest.

“I think we’ll stick to seven furlongs for the time being and he is in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster. If he bounces out of this well that will be an option.

“He’ll definitely get a mile and may even get a mile and a quarter.

“He’s a big, strong horse and we’re under no pressure with him at the moment.”

Urban Aspect looked a bright prospect when completing a hat-trick in the Nationwide Accident Repairs Services Handicap.

Running in a handicap for the first time after scoring at Chester and Nottingham, the Andrew Balding-trained colt could go on to better things after running out an authoritative winner.

Commander Man and Finniston Farm took the field along until the business end, where Urban Aspect (5-1) showed a neat turn of foot for Oisin Murphy to land the prize by one and three-quarter lengths from Crack On Crack On.

Mystic Flight was a length and a quarter away in third, with Dream Today the same distance back in fourth.

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