Those close to trainer Errol Bhungard prefer to give more weightage to the luck factor that helped jockey R. Yadav score a double for the stable last Tuesday. It was, however, a well-earned victory for the jockey, though every rider needs a certain amount of luck to win, be he a champion or as ordinary a rider as Yadav.
If it were all about luck, it would have been a treble for Yadav and not a double because another of his ride, Anokato, lost by a short head to Regal Rocket in the afternoon’s feature event, the Predator Cup. Ironically, it was Brave Venture’s victory by an identical margin that had put the jockey on course of a double.
Yadav’s next winner, Moon Quest, however, turned out to be a very facile winner after the Always A Rainbow-Ville Doree son looked to be in trouble 300m from home. It was Yadav’s sheer persistence and hard work in the saddle that made the four-year-old come with resolute run inside the last furlong of the race to win the Magnanimous Cup from a well-fancied Sugar Daddy.
Trainer T. N. Jaiswal also deserves a word of praise for the amazing effort produced by Regal Rocket, an eight-year-old horse, who picked up his third race from five starts this season. It is never an easy task to maintain the condition and form of an aged horse but the trainer has done wonders with Rock Hopper-Jwaayis son.
Bharath Singh’s double, on the other hand, must have gladdened the hearts of his owners as both the trainer’s two winners — Argento, in the 1,800m Douetil Memorial Cup, and Frontier Flame in the 1,200m Vanitas Handicap showed promise of a repeat victory.
Earlier on August 29, the victory of Richie Rich, in the 1,400m Calcutta Colts Trials Stakes, came as a surprise. The Richard Alford-trained three-year-old, partnered by son Rutherford, had gone down meekly to Modesto in their previous clash
when conceding one kg. With a 3 kg
pull in his favour, the Batzushka-Grand Start son produced a champion-like performance. However, the young Rutherford had always insisted that the horse’s poor run against Modesto was best ignored. The horse was on a come back trail after his training setback early in the season.
The bigger surprise came from the performance of Modesto who led from the start only to fold up below the distance-post. However, it was the third-placed Davaro, whose run looked promising enough to trouble the best in the Derby on September 17. A bad last till the home turn that the White Crown-Our Volcan colt took 12-wide, Davaro was seen eating up ground to cover nearly 50m in the home stretch.
The visiting jockey K. Suresh, too, had his share of luck as he booted home two winners without much of an effort. If Bright And Clear carried his top-weight to a facile victory for Suresh in the opener, the 1,200m Fire Flash Handicap, stable-mate Brighter Future simply outclassed the field after Suresh over came the early hiccup of 13 draw in the Pure Gold Handicap.
What turned out to be the most exciting race during the afternoon was the 1,400m Orange William Cup. It was Bharath’s duo of Allodium and Alcalde who fought out a keen battle from the distance-post with the former just about edging out Alcalde, who after a slow start had also negotiated the home-turn eight horses wide before going down narrowly.
Yadav was also in the winner’s enclosure on the day when he guided a heavyweight Flying Dash to a comfortable victory over two speedster Rhythm Divine and Castle Moon. Keep Rhythm Divine in mind over a 1,000m scurry.