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By Mahendra Mallya | 14 Sep 2014 | PUNE

Mrs Bakhtawar B. Chenoy & trainer Bezan Chenoy leading Congressional (A Sandesh Up), winner of The Panchshil Juvenile Million

The Panchshil Group have been associated with the RWITC for well over a decade now and are one of the longest associated sponsors with the Club. The Panchshil Juvenile Million was Sunday’s feature event and the Panchshil Group had a large representation at the Pune racecourse with a High Tea at the Members’ lawns and Chairman Atul Chordia was seen playing a perfect host to the numerous guests.

Congressional (Razeen – Kerataka) bred by the Greedtree Farm at Usha Stud, owned by Mr Dilip Thomas, Mrs Ameeta Mehra and Mrs Bhaktawar Chenoy, made a successful debut getting the better of favourite Satellite. The universal thought was that Satellite, with the benefit of a run would be hard to down, however, Congressional who missed debuting earlier due to a stable injury on the day of her planned debut, rose to the occasion and delivered a telling blow to pocket the feature race.

Congressional was out quick and settled well in the third spot just behind Shivalik Glory and Mystic Romance. Satellite was on the tail of Congressional with Saporelli along the rails. Fibonacci Sequence faltered at the start and lost his chances there.

Congressional got down to business soon on turning for home and easily zipped past the front runners. Satellite set about in chance and all hopes of a keen battle ended as one could gauge that the momentum was with Congressional. He galloped in fine rhythm and Sandesh was egging him on perfectly. He used the whip sparingly and only to spur on the rookie. Satellite had not thrown in the towel and she lurked close enough for Sandesh to keep on working. In the end, though Satellite inched closer, Congressional never looked in peril.

Sandesh, after drawing a rare blank day on Saturday, came into his own scoring a fine treble on Sunday. While Congressional was his best for the day, he earlier guided two hot favourites to easy victories. Greek God (Chevalier – Pas de L’Argent, Ruia Stud) had only a small number of opponents and his victory seemed a mere formality. True to the belief, Greek God took the jump well and dictated the terms throughout the race. IN the straight, he only got better and he strode out authoritatively to canter away to a eight-length plus victory. In The Limelight who was chasing Greek God all the way into the straight could not hold Pepe Senior in the closing stages and surrendered a possible runner-up slot narrowly.

Angeling (Lord Admiral – Golfing, Kunigal Stud Farm) lived up to the expectations and dished out a clinical performance over an extended trip and galloped to her second successive victory. This time it was even easier victory as none of her challengers could match her brilliance.

Cartel made the early running and led the field into the straight but packed up alarmingly to vanish from the scene. Once Angeling took charge, it was all over. Angeling galloped fluently and Sandesh only needed to occupy the armchair seat atop the Sunderji trainee and Angeling did the rest. Savage Garden kicked on to end second, well ahead of Pumba who improved to beat Belmont for the place money. Belmont may have needed the run and the way he was striding gave one the impression that he would have been happier with a furlong less to get back into the groove after the lay-off.        

 Trainer Sunderji sent out a double on the day, following Angeling’s impressive win with Desert Rage (New Famous – Desert Conqueror, Yervada Stud). Desert Rage had Dashrath Singh in the saddle and was a rage in he betting ring as well. He was out quickly and settled to stay close behind Rising Angel until the turn.

Into the straight, Desert Rage surged past Rising Angel, the latter slowing considerably down and offering the lead in a platter to the favourite. Desert Rage quickened well on turning for home and dew away from the rest. Royal Sapphire finished on well but never gave any indication of troubling Desert Rage at any stage. Indispensible improved to take the third spot, ending close behind Royal Sapphire.

Hawker (Multidimensional – Access All Areas, Mehra Stud) came alive with an electrifying finish to stun a bunch of more fancied runners. This run of Hawker was so much like his debut run last year his only other victorious run.

The front bunch over the seven-furlong race was tightly packed with Quest For Love enjoying a slender lead ahead of favourite La Femme Fleur, Cactus Cash, Haunting Moments, Legend of the Seas and Hawker. Shining Path and the others were in the rear half of the field.

La Femme Fleur barely got past the leader with Legend of the Seas alongside when Hawker arrived with a dazzling run. He was so fast that Hawker himself veered inwards with the force. Jockey DK Ashish quickly got him under control and Hawker soon shot like an arrow outpacing the rest by a good measure. He was all alone in front in the final furlong and galloped away to notch a heavy victory by a whopping eight lengths. Glorious Opinion and Shining Path covered a lot of ground and did extremely well to make the frame. Haunting Moments finished along with the two ending a close fourth. La Femme Fleur disappointed and ended far away eighth.

Lex Luther (Sedgefield – Pampered Princess, Jai Govind Stud) covered considerable ground to etch out his maiden win in a sensational manner. He was not in the best of positions coming into the straight, and from where he came and delivered was commendable.

Blackbean, Rising Wave, Acker Bilk, Flying Trigger and Zambian comprised the front bunch and they were well ahead of Lex Luthor at the turn. Lex Luthor was laboring even as they rounded the curve and one would give him a slim chance if any, at that stage.

Rising Wave sped to the lead and with Flying Trigger hard at work it seemed that Yash Narredu would hold the sway. This was when they were approaching the distance post. Rising Wave held a slender lead but was fighting to stay ahead. Zambian warmed up to gather momentum and just when he rose to challenge Rising Wave, Lex Luthor arrived on the scene to pip Zambian and Rising Wave to score a dramatic win, timing his run to perfection. Zambian was unlucky to miss out, while Rising Wave too was up to it while beaten to third.

Yash Narredu astride Backstreet Bay (Verglas – Farmers Swing, Sohna Stud) did the right moves and won the day’s opening race, holding on to win by a short margin. He took off at the turn and built a handy lead which held him in good stead.

He settled alongside leader Light of Arabia with the others following in pairs. Zaan faltered at the start and took no serious part in the race.

Yash Narredu went into the lead when he got the chance and pushed Backstreet Bay to go on ahead. By that time Alectar, who was in the fifth spot, was left to cover a lot of ground in the straight. Sandesh atop Alectar started to close in, but must have realized that he had too much to do in the straight. He rode out Alectar, but all he could do was narrow down the margin of victory as Yash was relentless in riding out Backstreet Bay and helped the Adil Dajee ward nose the wire with Alectar breathing down his neck.

The last race of the day saw most of the money come down heavily on top weighted Abderus, in the hunt for his second successive win. His backers would have had their hearts in the mouth as Abderus started to shift out in the straight, taking Ancient Treasure along. The pair veered out to the stand side and were battling it out. The wide gap along the rails left a good chance for any to take advantage of, however, none could do so. In the end, Abderus sustained his speed all the way and comfortably warded off Ancient Treasure to land the spoils. The white cone hoist was most awaited and a majority would have heaved a sigh of relief when the race was cleared.

For the professionals, trainer SK Sunderji saddled a double, While Sandesh with a treble and Yash Narredu with a double were the shining performers of the day.