Fanning stars with Beverley double

Freyja lifts Westwood prize

  • Saturday 31 August
  • News
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Joe Fanning enjoyed a Beverley double on Saturday with successes in both the featured Listed Beverley Bullet Sprint and the Irish EBF Fillies’ Novice Stakes.

Mark Johnston’s Freyja provided the latter victory, prevailing after only a photo finish could split her and second-placed Afraid Of Nothing.

The two-year-old filly closed in on the eventual runner-up in the final strides of the seven-and-a-half-furlong contest, claiming victory by just a head as the 11-10 favourite.

“I wasn’t absolutely sure about the stiff seven furlongs here, but it looked like she needed every inch of it,” said Johnston.

“Joe (Fanning) said if he’d have got beat, he’d have blamed himself because he got boxed in there. He felt he could always get the lead over the field and thankfully he did.”

The one-mile-two-furlong William Hill Silver Cup Handicap went the way of Andrew Balding’s Good Birthday (11-4), piloted by Ben Curtis to a half-length victory over race favourite Desert Icon.

The three-year-old Darbirsim colt was redeemed after disappointing in the King George V Stakes at Ascot and the bet365 Handicap at Newmarket – where he started as favourite.

“He has plenty of ability and he was nice and relaxed today, so that’s a bonus,” said Curtis.

“I’ve had a bit of luck in these colours, but this is actually my first ride for Andrew Balding, so it’s nice to win for him.”

Balding may now aim for the Cambridgeshire at Newmarket on September 28, adding: “That was a really great effort and I’m delighted with him.

“He was given a great ride and he’s going to develop into a pretty decent horse. That (the Cambridgeshire) is certainly a possibility, if he gets in.”

Four Wheel Drive continued his fruitful summer by winning his third race of the season when successful in the five-furlong Constant Security Handicap Stakes.

The three-year-old followed up an earlier win at Beverley and a success at Ripon by returning to the Westwood to see off Desert Ace at a starting price of 12-1.

Trainer David Brown said: “He’s in fabulous nick. He’s just bang in form. We had him in at Chester and it was a toss-up where to go. Graham (Lee) said I’d made the right choice and that was before the event, so he’s right, isn’t he?

“When it starts getting tough, that last 100 yards, he can carry his speed.”

Calder Prince, the one-time mount of footballer Michael Owen in a charity race, took the Educare Of Beverley Handicap over seven and a half furlongs at a sizeable starting price of 18-1.

Tom Dascombe’s grey gelding held on to register a three-quarter-length win under jockey Alistair Rawlinson.

The Beverley Annual Badgeholders Novice Stakes over seven and a half furlongs was claimed by William Haggas’ Montatham (30-110 favourite), ridden by Dane O’Neill, after which David O’Meara and Harrison Shaw teamed up to win the Future Stars Apprentice Handicap with Gylo (6-4 favourite).

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