CATALONIA OFF TO A FLYING START IN CAREER
HYDERABAD
By Madhukar Bhagawan
Wednesday 25 Oct 2017
Trainer LVR Deshmukh leading Catalonia (Suraj Narredu Up), winner of The Dodla Pratap Chander Reddy Memorial Million

Freshman sire Air Support’s progeny Catalonia (Air Support-Cesandri / Kunigal Stud) recorded a splendid victory in the Dodla Pratap Chander Memorial Million at Hyderabad on Wednesday. Air Support, an American Turf horse and winner of the Virginia Derby, Gr.2 is a son of Smart Strike, also the sire of the ‘Multi Millionaire’ & Leading Sire Curlin and the celebrated English Channel.

Catalonia was off to a smart start over the 5 1/2 furlongs dash and settled well in front followed by the favourite Vallee Romance and the rest. Inside the last 300 metres Suraj Narredu gave a couple of taps to the filly and she took off with a terrific turn of foot to stretch out from Vallee Romance who ran a bit green under pressure. Kingswood and Southern Meterr filled the frame in that order many lengths behind. Rising Ace was a non-starter in the race.

“She is a filly with a good temperament” said trainer L.V.R.Deshmukh after Catalonia’s resounding success and added,” She has all the ingredients to be a ‘Classic’ filly will surely be seen there”.

Ananta Vatsalya trained Amorous White (Stern Opinion-Adios Meadowlake) bounced back to winning ways in the Mysore Race Club Cup, a 1000 metres dash for horses in the highest class. The speedy grey colt rushed to the lead as the gates opened and brought the field into view on the straight. It was a rare sight on top of the straight with four grey horses Amorous White, Preciosa, Rahul’s Pet and Mr Baahubali getting down to fight for it. The champion of the season, jockey Akshay Kumar never gave up on Amorous White and staved off a strong bid of Preciosa. Rahul’s Pet stayed on in third followed by Chase Your Dreams.

The Hyderabad Monsoon season came to a close for tabulating the Championship awards for the professionals. Trainers K.Satheesh and Laxman Singh tied for the honours with 22 winners each. Akshay Kumar was adjudged as the leading jockey with 34 wins while Md. Ismail topped the tally with 13 wins among apprentice riders claiming allowance. Lady In Lace and Prevalent Force with 12 points each were declared as the Champion horses while Amorous White who had 4 wins this monsoon was adjudged as the Horse of the season.

Trainer M. Srinivas Reddy had it one-two in the Nawab Arshad Ali Khan Memorial Cup with stable companions Doroteo and Dahlois finishing that way. Doroteo (China Visit-Dazzling Queen) got to the lead quickly from an outward draw as they took off for the 244 metres trip but soon settled in second when Vijay’s Dynamite raced to the front.  Vijay’s Dynamite held forte till the last 100 metres but the relentless riding of S. John got Doroteo to raise a gallop and the 4 year old sped past in the closing stages. Dahlois also rallien in to beat Vijay’s Dynamite for the second place.

Laxman Singh trained Takisha (Green Coast-Political Power) opened her account in the Angler Plate. The filly was taken on a start to finish bid over the 1200 metres sprint by Gopal Singh and they were about two lengths clear from the on-money favourite Dream Catcher on entering the straight. Dream Catcher was ridden hard to bridge the gap but Takisha held on gamely by a neck at the finish. Starlight and Magical Skill filled the frame in that order.

Zoheb Shaikh trained Good Opinion (Stern Opinion-Chiquelle) scored a maiden win in the division I of the Belle Dancer Plate. The youngster was off to a lethargic beginning and was blocked for room immediately after jumping out but started to improve from around the field and was up with the leader Shakesphere within the first 400 metres. Suraj was at work on Shakesphere on entering the straight and the favourite looked to be moving away but Good Opinion picked up momentum in the last 100 metres and flashed ahead to score. Shakesphere lost the second place to Carnival Express on the last stride.

Apprentice C.P. Bopanna gave a confident ride on trainer Ravider Singh’s Shandaar (Lord Admiral-Duchess Of York) to lift the lower division. Improving positions gradually, Shandaar had slipped into the lead rounding for home and stretched out to win unchallenged. Sweet Story rallied on in second followed by Prep One and Invasion.

D.Netto trained White Gold (C P West-Heavenly Sound / Galloping Acres Stud) scored in the concluding race of the day, the Vemulavada Plate. Off to a good start from the outermost draw among the 14 runners, White Gold moved up to track the leader Jem Star. On top of the straight White Gold surged to take over the running and drew clear from thereon. Wine N Dine, Market Leader and Penumatcha’s Pride filled the frame in that order in a photo finish for the minor places. Icing On The Cake was a non-starter in the race.