Boccaccio stars in four-star performance for Doyle at Yarmouth

Rider warms up for Oaks ride in style

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Charlie Appleby appears to hold plenty of aces in his juvenile team and 850,000 guineas purchase Boccaccio looked another when forming the second leg of a four-timer for James Doyle at Yarmouth.

Fancy entries are currently absent from the name of the Dubawi colt – but that is likely to change after he got off the mark at the first attempt when claiming the British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes by a length and a half.

Assistant trainer Alex Merriam said of the 5-4 winner: “That was a nice way to start him off. He jumped well and was very professional. He was up front the whole way and didn’t get a lot of cover, but he did it nicely.

“He has been very straightforward and looks the part.”

Those taking short prices about Velorum were made to sweat before the 1-6 favourite mastered Audarya by a length, to make it a Doyle treble and a double for Appleby in the Eastern Power Systems Of Norwich Novice Stakes.

Merriam said: “He got a little bit warm as they were held up down the start for a while. He was always travelling well and James looked fairly comfortable most of the way.

“He had to work for it, but that is only his third run and you would like to think he will learn from it.

“He was giving the winner the best part of a stone, but when James asked him he picked up well. That run behind Skardu was a long time ago, but he did it nicely the first day back.”

George Scott could have been forgiven for thinking victory was never going to materialise for Strawberry Jack – but after finishing in the frame in his five previous starts he finally hit the target to get the ball rolling for Doyle in the Haven Wild Duck Holiday Park Handicap.

Doyle said after the 3-1 shot’s two-and-a-half-length success: “He looked a bit frustrating on paper, but he hasn’t done a whole lot wrong in his races. I’m sure connections will be glad he has got his head in front.”

An afternoon to remember for Doyle was completed by the William Haggas-trained Listen To The Wind (3-1) in the Nicholsons Stalham Engineering Handicap.

Doyle said after the two-length success: “It worked out nicely as I followed the Richard Hannon horse, who was on a three-timer, and I knew that was the one to follow.

“She ran badly on her first start, but it was really deep ground. Being back on a sounder surface has definitely helped.”

On the four-timer, he added: “I’d swap them all for the big one tomorrow (Frankellina in the Oaks), but it is nice to go into a weekend like this with plenty of confidence.”

Lucky’s Dream gained his first victory away from Chelmsford when coming with a powerful late run under former champion jockey Jim Crowley to foil long-time leader Le Maharajah (8-1) in the Len Burgess Memorial Handicap.

Crowley said of the Ian Williams-trained winner: “They went steady and three down he just got caught flat footed. He stayed on well and needed every yard of it. A stronger pace would suit him better.”

Given his size Admirals Bay would not look out of place over hurdles, but he may have more to offer on the Flat after getting his head in front for the first time when coming from last to first to take the Seadell Shops & Holiday Chalets Hemsby Handicap.

Winning jockey Franny Norton said of Andrew Balding’s 3-1 winner: “He is a big baby and he got a bump coming out of the stalls, so that put me on the back foot. They weren’t great what he beat today, but he did it the hard way.

“If you put one of those good jump jockeys on him over hurdles that might just suit him!”

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