Elarqam starting to live up to expectations

Sandown success another step in the right direction

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Elarqam continued to look more like the finished article when making his class count with a tenacious success in the Davies Insurance Services Gala Stakes at Sandown.

In a race not run to suit the Mark Johnston-trained four-year-old, he successfully defied a penalty to claim his second Listed success of the season in the mile-and-a-quarter prize.

One of a host of runners in with a chance inside the final quarter of a mile the son of Frankel – whose three-year-old campaign came to a halt in August – worked his way to the front inside the final furlong and stuck his neck out to get the better of Extra Elusive by a head.

Johnston said of the 11-10 winner: “We think he is getting a bit better for racing. The horse faced time off and is not the kind of horse to benefit from that as he gets stuffy, fat and lazy. He is better for a bit more racing.

“He has run different kind of races the last two or three races. Today he got stuck on the outside of a relatively slow pace.

“He doesn’t change gear quickly, but when things are going wrong he has got the class to get out of it. We will maybe look at the York Stakes now.

“We have certainly not had any discussions about going further (than 10 furlongs), the only discussion has been about coming back to a mile. I think he will be better with a stronger pace.

“I thought he ran a very good race at Ascot (third in Wolferton Stakes). Hopefully he will gradually work his way back up through the grades.”

Liberty Beach showed a blistering turn of foot in the Chasemore Farm Dragon Stakes.

Having suffered the first defeat of her career when finishing best of the far-side group in the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, the John Quinn-trained daughter of Cable Bay took that form forward to run out a stylish winner of the five-furlong Listed prize.

Breaking well from stall two, the 9-4 favourite sat just off the early pace set by Makyon and Al Raya, before quickening clear after sweeping to the front inside the furlong to defeat Dream Shot by three and a quarter lengths.

Quinn said: “It was a very smart performance. She is a very good filly. From the first time she came in the yard she was lovely and professional.

“I didn’t know what ability she had, but if you put that altogether with ability you have the real deal.

“She came down on Thursday and never turned a hair. She quickened up like a good one, but she is a good one.

“This track lends itself to going too quick, too early, but she sat in behind the speed and then she did what a very good horse does, as she got to them and quickened again – and impressively.

“She didn’t win at Ascot, but she has shown how good she is.

“She is in the Papin, which Signora Cabello won last year, and she is comparable to her. She is in at Goodwood (Richmond). We have nice options with a nice filly.”

Laser Show (14-1) saw his name introduced into the betting for next year’s Qipco 2000 Guineas following a winning debut in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Novice Stakes.

The Saeed bin Suroor-trained son of New Approach was given a 50-1 quote for next year’s opening colts Classic after defeating odds-on favourite Riot by a neck, to give winning rider Tom Queally his first success at the Esher course in more than five years.

Tony Garth, representing the winning trainer, said: “He was very impressive. He travelled really well.

“Tom said he changed leads a little bit up the straight, but that once he got balanced and had something to aim at he battled all the way. The stiff seven suited him.

“He is still a big baby and took a bit of convincing to go in the paddock. Tom didn’t have to be hard on him in the race. It was a good introduction.”

Elarqam starting to live up to expectations
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