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One O One walks tall among fashion ably - bred horses with a fantastic win in Ahmed Abbas Million

By Usman Rangila | 12 Aug 2003 | PUNE

Premier Classe (C Rajendra up) bveing led in by Owners of Premiere League Racing Syndicate

Winning major racing events is undoubtedly an exhilarating experience for any racehorse owner. But, if some careful planning goes into achieving this success, then victory becomes more enduring. Dr Anil Kumar, the veterinarian-turned-trainer, out to prove to his mettle in this highly competitive field of sports, accomplished this feat as he fashioned the success of One O One in the inaugural Ahmed Abbas Gold Million on Sunday. 
There was nothing much to write home about in the debut performances of One O One at Mumbai and none too impressive would be the best way to describe them. A closer look, however, revealed Dr Anil did sense the apparent potential of the bay three-year-old colt, entrusted to him by Mr Madhav Patankar, a sporting owner. 
Had he not believed that the son of Tirol had the requisite talent to take on fashionably bred horses, the young professional wouldn’t have engaged Pesi Shroff to ride the bay on his debut. One O One could not oblige then but one particular run where he ran a good fifth behind Estonia in the Dashmesh and Hargobind Stud Million, was full of promise. Soon after his participation in the Poonawalla Breeders Multi Million, where he ran nowhere, the colt was gelded. And then, gradually, after the horses shifted to Pune for the monsoon season, an ambitious plan was drawn by Dr Anil with the Ahmed Abbas Gold Million in his mind. He gave One O One a "run" over a seven-furlong trip right at the start of the season. As the D-day arrived, few were ready to give One O One an outstanding chance against the likes of Rave, Rahil, King of Hearts, Psychic Flame and Sprungli. Dr Anil requisitioned the services of Pesi Shroff for one more time. One O One did not let down his master and Pesi for one rode in copybook style to justify the faith imposed in him by the connections.
Rank outsider Sunshiner set a scorching pace with One O One settling beautifully towards the inner rails and Pesi taking every precaution to avoid any possible traffic hazard. Even towards the end of the seven-furlong journey, Sunshiner was going great guns with Rahil, One O One and Rave in hot pursuit and off their respective bridles. It was only Pesi who could derive the best response from among the three horses and One O One soon unfurled the victory flag. Rahil, Sunshiner and Rave had to settle for the consolation berths. It was a fairy tale ending to all the daydreaming done by the owner and trainer of One O One.
Premier Classe brought similar joy for her owners, the Premiere League Racing Syndicate, and trainer Imtiaz Sait with a stylish victory in the hands of C. Rajendra. It was a real heartening display of her prowess that too on her very first visit to the racetracks after an illness-induced sabbatical of over a year. Such was the superiority of the Diffident-offspring that Rajendra got an armchair ride. Sparingly raced Romantic Hero trounced his opponents in a manner, which was more or less identical to that of his stable-partner Premier Classe. The haughty son of Placerville won the concluding event to increase his winning tally to two and this from just three starts.
Following the footsteps of his batch-mate Neeraj Rawal, who registered a surprise victory astride Speedster a day earlier, apprentice rider T. Atul guided Hormuz Antia-trained Royalist to an upset win. Trainer Robert D’mellow’s ward Akash cornered majority support in the betting ring but could hardly justify the enthusiasm shown by his followers as he finished in the dump.
Mahroze Irani led in a profitable double via Candavega and Cyavana, both ridden by S. Rajesh. The former held on valiantly to escape the clutches of Captivated, who warmed up late to her task. Cyavana was easily the best horse in the field and proved so as he got stronger at the finish to win convincingly from Heart Throb and Litolier Glamour. Provocateur finished fourth but this effort should be considered good as he was entrusted to the inexperienced T. Atul, who could not extricate himself from the mess in which he landed towards the inside rails.
Like Akash had done earlier, Royal Divine too played truant. It is very hard to call it an accident, but reports to suggest that some confusion at the gates caused Royal Divine to lose a distance at the start. Secret Obsession made full use of the opportunity to rake in some moolah for her owner-trainer Nana Raghunath. The performances of Absolute Dominance and Firey Future were too bad to be true and devoid of any empathy for the students of form.