Trainer M Narredu leading Mable (R K Mahesh Up), winner of The Royal Calcutta Turf Club Cup Div-I
Trainer M Narredu’s youngsters Mable and Manyatta won the Division I & II respectively, of the Royal Calcutta Turf Club Trophy, providing a fine ‘feature-double’ for the trainer. Manyatta (Rebuttal – Picture Show), owned by Mr Jaydev Mody, won with complete authority leaving no chance to the others in the fray, thus justifying the cramped odds (6/10). He was quick at the start and maintained a steady pace and had Your Lordship right along for company until the turn. Once into the straight, jockey DK Ashish let Manyatta gallop on his own terms and eased him into a fiery pace. Manyatta stretched out impressively and was soon leaving them behind. Jens Secret was ridden out to try and make a race of it, but could do precious little as Manyatta dominated the homestretch and won with awesome ease.
Mable (Diamond Green – Lady College) won in similar fashion, getting a good early start and sustaining it all the way. Jockey RK Mahesh drove Mable to the front and dictated the terms all the way into the straight. Mable entered the straight with a handy lead and was followed by New World. Something New once again drifted out losing all her chances, ending up on the outer railing just as she had done on her debut.
Mable meanwhile, marched on ahead and looked good coming into the final furlong. New World was not gaining on the leader and had to be content with the next best position. She’s Sweet covered ground to improve positions and ended a fair third, while Quail did little to catch the eye, ending a tame fourth.
Jockey S Zervan was electric while scoring a fine treble on the day. Holiday Dancer (Ontario – Speckled Band) provided him a fairly easy victory. All Zervan had to do is to only guide the Mansoor Shah filly to the front and she galloped on at a friendly clip, yet maintaining a firm grip all through the race. Smokey Baba improved to second in the homestretch and in the final furlong managed to close in just a bit to marrow down the margin – marginally. Star Fire Lady was right on the tail of Holiday Dancer but at the business end, she did not quicken as needed and lost out the runner up berth to Smokey Baba.
Zervan struck immediately in the next race with Flying Star (Senure – Matisse) in another start-to-finish essay. Flying Star this time made it all the way without encountering any resistance from his opponents.
Zervan’s third success came a race later with Erotic Flame (Ontario – Strange Destiny) and this too was a gate to post victory. Setting off at a good pace, Zervan kept Erotic Flame on a tight leash once he hit the front and nursed the filly to a steady pace. Lucky Red and Historical occupied the next two positions and the others were on an educative run.
Erotic Flame quickened well on turning for home and sped ahead readily. Zervan let her do her thing as she was accelerating on her own. Historica got past Lucky Red but despite being ridden out failed to make any impression on Erotic Flame. The Mansoor Shah trainee notched up a comfortable victory, her maiden success nailing the opposition without dropping sweat.
Double Diamond (Warrshan – Leit Motif) scored her first victory in the opening race of the day setting the ‘start-to-finish’ trend for the day. Six of the seven races slated for the day were won in this fashion. Double Diamond, trained by Narendra Lagad, was ridden ably by Champion jockey of the season, Dashrath Singh. They hit the front and dictated the proceedings right through. In the straight, Double Diamond kicked on gamely and had only Jacqueline Smile in her vicinity. That’s My Master was a close third at the turn, but failed to quicken and make it count falling back when it came to a fight. Double Diamond galloped on and Jacqueline Smile ended chasing the winner.
McQueen (China Visit – Oiseau De Guerre) rose to a higher level after being consistent throughout the season to end his campaign on a winning note, in the concluding event of the day. Sitting close behind Mypethoney along with Purple Moon, Highway Express and Neptune, McQueen made his way through the inner railings to collar Mypethoney in the final furlong. Purple Moon tried hard to catch up and although he was alongside the leader, Purple Moon could not raise a winning gallop. Bay Blues was the one to pose a serious challenge and fought hard. But McQueen showed enough resolve to stay hold on to his slender lead and stay ahead at the wire to win narrowly. Bay Blues, Mypethoney and Purple Moon finished on in that order in a close four-way finish. Prince who was a bit tardy at the start ended one off the frame.
For the professionals trainers Mansoor Shah and M Narredu saddled a double each, while jockey Zervan did extremely well to score a treble.