Ansbach Wins with Ease
Ansbach (Aslam Kader up), winning the Harvins Bangalore 2000 Guineas (Grade II) from Ciel Fleuri (Ryan Marshall up)
Vijay’s Singh trained Ansbach’s win in the Harvins Bangalore 2000 Guineas was on predictable lines. Ansbach towered over the rest but there was none in the fray who was clearly second best and as such, there were a flood of final entries and as a result 13 runners competed the event, perhaps the biggest number in recent years. What came as a revelation at the end of the race was the surprise performance of Ciel Fleuri who lifted her performance so much after a dismal essay at the Golconda 1000 Guineas that she has earned herself a ticket for the Indian Oaks at Mumbai. Ifloookscouldkill finished a close third ahead of Taipan who was made to travel wide all the way wide but the performance of the Don’t Forget Me progeny was encouraging because it is quite possible that the main stars of the show may head towards Mumbai and the field for the Derby may be rather depleted to give his connections hope unless of course most of them make a detour.
Ansbach, who had won the Mysore 2000 Guineas and the Derby, went into the race at cramped odds. For a change, jockey Aslam Kader placed his mount in a favourable position, racing a handy fifth or sixth and then alerting the son of Alnasr Alwasheek to the task inside the final two furlongs. The patented response from Ansbach saw him sweep past the front-runners to win with a measure of comfort though the jockey changing course and going towards the rails close home caused a slight interference to Ciel Fleuri, but without making a material difference to the outcome. As such, the objection by Ryan Marshall was thrown out.
Ciel Fleuri who was at the wrong end of the field on turning for home, came the shortest way and went into the lead for a brief while only to be overhauled by the eventual winner. Oath Fulfilled, a final entry, set a fast pace but ran out of reserves to finish fifth. Senor Pele who had raised hopes of being a classic type, failed to sustain his challenge but he may perform better with age.
Elusive Hero who had given a poor account of himself as a favourite last time out, was seen in different colours albeit over a slightly extended trip, running favourite Spirited Effort close. Elusive Hero who made the entire running, still had the edge inside the distance post but had he been subjected to a typical Aslam Kader aggressive finish, the son of Elusive Pimpernel might have upset the applecart of the favourite. Spirited Effort, who had lost by a whisker to Tobler in the Pune Derby, got ahead in the shadow of the winning post. Butter Sponge did not stay and probably his best trip is up to seven furlongs.
The Red Sand troupe got their act together after a couple of rehearsals to win the A R Keshava Mudaliar Memorial Plate, a race for horses rated 20 to 35. Sunspangled came up with a late bid only to loose by a whisker but then it was more due to the overconfidence of the jockey of the winner that this sort of a result came about. The Stipes were perhaps perturbed that the style of running and instructions given were at variance with the last run which had resulted in the jockey having been slapped a fine of Rs 5,000 for unsatisfactory effort. But they were unable to put across the technicalities of their argument before the Stewards properly or the latter were unable to comprehend them, the trainer at least was able to act out his part well so that the denouement had a happy ending.
Ganapathy trained Diffident just about got up in time to get the better of Rose Garden to win the Vedavathi Cup, a race for juveniles. Brave Persian who did the front running weakened only close home and this well-bred colt should come out of the maiden ranks in his next essay.
Puttanna trained Brunswick looked head and shoulders above the opposition in the Parfait Amour Plate (Div II) that the son of Classic Tale won in common canter. Brunswick has the ability to repeat in tougher company. The upper division of the race went the way of last start failure Think of Us who won from end to end, with Special Request, after a tardy start, chasing in vain. St Lucinda, who was one of the fancied runners, lost all her chances at the gate itself.
Altosax was too good in the Mercara Plate and the victory of Inayathulla ward was in conformity with the known form. Inxss was a noteworthy second. In the day’s other action, which was fought by lesser-fancied runners, Seat of the Master sprang a surprise over a sprint, with Diamond Harbour’s challenge being a wee bit late to make an impact on the result. Seat of the Master held on to win by a whisker.