So Perfect (Suraj Narredu up) winner of the K.N.Chennabasappa Memorial Cup being led in by trainer Mr.Dhariwal (deputising for trainer Mr.Shroff) & Mr.Zeyn Mirza
Pesi Shroff trained So Perfect put it across his rivals in the 1600 metres K N Chennabasappa Memorial Cup, a race for horses rated 80 and above, which featured Saturday’s races. Arturo was universally expected to win but the favourite played truant, not putting his best foot forward, paving the way for So Perfect to win at nourishing odds. Mysore based Spark of Glory put up a stiff resistance, not giving up till overhauled inside the final 100 metres by the eventual winner.
Royal Falcon too was gaining places in the end to be an eye-catching third. Arturo had the racing form to run as a favourite but not at the cramped odds that he was quoted at.
Royal Falcon had been pretty consistent while Spark of Glory had won impressively at Mysore. So Perfect had always won against the run of expectations in the recent past. Spark of Glory had the first run on his opponents and though Arturo was well placed to strike, he did not show any spark and was a lost cause well before the final furlong.
It was So Perfect who was showing promise by moving up steadily from the rear and finishing with a flourish to win to spring a big surprise. Royal Falcon who was boxed along the rails,showed promise only after the cause had been lost.
Calcutta Derby winner Aristotle planted at the gates and lost all his chances while Full Speed who could have figured at the finish lost his chances as rookie jockey Vijay Kadam could not force his passage along the rails.
Dhariwal trained Abraxas recorded a comfortable win in the Maj E Fownes Memorial Plate (Div I). Despite getting off to a tardy start, the son of Pennine Ridge improved places on the wide outside and had no problems in finishing clear of Alejandros who had the chances but not the wherewithal to make a difference to the outcome. High Rising made no show when Finishing a tame third. Caramel who had let down as a favourite, had no such problems this time, when guided by in form jockey C Alford.
The Rashid Byramji trainee checked in well clear of the opposition to record a comfortable vcitory over Aspen Bay in the lower division of the race.
There was strong support for Zooming and Estrella who both disappointed, not living up to expectations. Padmanabhan trained Predominant proved too good for the field in the 2400 metres Supervite Plate. Andreas and Allied Victory were strongly backed to win but were unequal to the task. Predominant who seems to have put on condition, took charge at the final turn and went away for a smashing win.
Sandokan was a surprise second while favourite Andreas finished third. The effort told on the three-year old Andreas as he collapsed soon after the race and died of massive cardiac arrest.
Jockey Krishnan had incurred the wrath of the Stewards for not letting Lava to run on merits on the last occasion. The bloodless victory of Lava only served to highlight the fact that the Stewards hadn’t been harsh. Afghan made a belated effort to finish second.
Sierrra’s start to finish attempt in the 1400 metres Cape Dance plate took its toll on the favourite as she slackened in the dying moments of the race, allowing Life’s Laughter to gain the verdict in his favor.
With Red Mustang withdrawn from the fray as he bolted while being led to the starting gates, Culture Shock was left to tackle a spineless opposition and the favourite won with a great deal of comfort. Another fancied runner Palace Star too was a non-starter after reaching the start gates and it was left to Courtier to snatch the verdict in the last stride from Azazel.