Surf Dancer gave the form of leading 2000 Guineas contender Mums Tipple a fuerther boost as he continued his own own upward curve with victory in the Greene King IPA Conditions Stakes at Chelmsford City.
Having finished fifth behind Richard Hannon’s recent runaway York scorer on debut at Ascot, the William Haggas-trained son of Lope De Vega backed up his Leicester victory in the seven-furlong feature.
Despite showing signs of immaturity, the 4-7 favourite – who holds a Group One entry in the Darley Dewhurst Stakes – comfortably saw off runner-up Light Angel by half a length to complete a double for James Doyle.
Maureen Haggas, wife of the winning trainer, said: “He is very laid-back and chilled. That race at Ascot is working out well. I think seven is his trip at the moment.
“He picked up – but when he got to the front he just looked about a bit. He is going the right way, which is the main thing. He needed to win today to take a step up – (and) I think he will stay a mile, because he is so relaxed.
“We just felt he needed to take small steps rather than be chucked in the deep end too early – but he has won two races, and will have to try something a bit better now.”
Solar Heights made it three wins from four visits to the Essex track when getting the ball rolling for Doyle with a facile six-length success in the Old Speckled Hen Handicap.
Doyle said of the James Tate-trained 1-2 winner: “She has improved a lot with the headgear on.
“I got a lead off the second favourite, and she picked up well. She ran well in a big field the last day.”
Jamie Osborne will be forever in debt to Tom Marquand, after he galvanised Hashtagmetoo – part-owned by the Lambourn trainer’s wife Katie – to victory by half a length in the East Coast IPA Fillies’ Novice Auction Stakes.
Assistant trainer Katie Moffatt said, with a smile: “The marriage was under threat if she didn’t win soon, (so) thankfully it has been saved by Tom Marquand!”
“Katie and a group of friends formed a syndicate called The Other Club.
“Katie went to the sales in Ireland with Jamie. She spotted her, and they ended up buying her.
Simon Dow hopes the length victory of El Borracho in the Greene King Free Trade Handicap is a sign of things to come for rising star Hector Loza, who runs in the Group Three Betway Solario Stakes at Sandown on Saturday.
Dow said of his 16-1 winner: “Just going into today, we said we could do with a confidence booster – because the last few haven’t run so well – so that’s nice.
“Although there is plenty of speed in his pedigree, his prowess is stamina. We were always at some stage going to step him up in trip.
“He (jockey Levi Williams) rides him out a lot, and they have got a good rapport.”
There was more than one reason co-owner Bill Rogerson had to celebrate the neck victory of the Mike Murphy-trained Desert Fox (9-2) in the Ice Breaker Pale Ale Handicap.
Rogerson said: “We thought he would win today. I’ve no idea why he loves it here, but that is his fourth win here.
“We bred him from the mare we had (Snow Moccasin) when she got injured. He was the last one, and we kept him – and he has done all right with us.”