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By Mahendra Mallya | 27 Dec 2015 | MUMBAI

Mr Kishore M. Dingra leading Shivalik Showers (A Sandesh Up), winner of The Maharaja Jiwajirao Scindia Trophy (Gr.2)

Shivalik Showers (Dancing Forever – Sun Shower, Hazara Stud) put up another bold start-to-finish performance and galloped on gamely to win the Maharaja Jiwajirao Scindia Trophy (Gr2).

Shivalik Showers was the half-money favourite and it always did appear to be a two-horse race, Booker Jones being his main rival. The race did go just as per that belief and after leading them homewards, Shivalik Showers only encountered a fight from Booker Jones.

Chasing Shivalik Showers all the way, Booker Jones tried hard to catch up in the homestretch. It was only in the final furlong that Booker Jones started to close in on Shivalik Showers. However, jockey A Sandesh was persistent with his riding and with Shivalik Showers giving it his all, they managed to ward off Booker Jones by half a length.

Followers of jockey Sandesh had a profitable day as the young champ rode out four winners in the day. He made it n ideal debut for Karthik’s ward Bold March (Arasan – Warsaw Pact, Exhilaration Stud), nursing the rookie patiently and guiding him to unleash his best at the business end.

Commandperformance led them into the straight with Comic Timing quickly moving alongside. Smart N Noble was looking for room when Bold March arrived with a speedy gallop. He got past them all approaching the distance post and once in the lead, he kept the momentum going to win comfortably. Smart N Noble had t switch lanes at a crucial juncture and by the time he warmed up, it was too late. Smart N Noble ended a good second and now should look for his turn soon. Trombone too arrived a wee bit late and finished on alongside the runner-up to finish in the money.

Paramour (LordAdmiral – Paramo, Hazara Stud) unleashed a powerful finishing gallop to score an emphatic victory justifying the all round support he received. Sandesh settled the AM Jadhav trainee in fourth after Chase The Ace and Shades of Glory disputed the lead.

Shades of Glory galloped on leaving Chase the Ace behind but with about 350 to go, Paramour arrived with a scintillating gallop and although Shades of glory had a handy lead, it was only a matter of time before Paramour sailed into the lead. Paramour got past the resisting Shades of glory to score her maiden victory in her second start and looks good for more. Shades of Glory was a fighting second. Carralisa finished on with a sparkling run covering a lot of ground and improving positions by the stride to end an eye-catching third.

Sandesh rounded off his string of success with a fluent victory partnering Phoenix Knight (Phoenix Tower – Cine Star, Manjri Stud). Favorite Evidence shot into the lead soon on start with Elsa who received equal support in the ring, a close second, Swaraj and Phoenix Knight chased the pair in front with the others following them.

Evidence led until the final furlong with Elsa not quickening as she would have liked. Swaraj too was not gaining much. Sandesh lit up Phoenix Knight and the Dallas Todywalla ward sprung to life with a spirited run to dash past them all and score a facile victory. Phoenix Knight dazzled in his finish and can score again. Evidence held on to the second spot with Elsa and Aliboxer taking the minor spots.

Undisputed (Varenar – Gold Bar, Equus Stud) shocked the field with a touch of brilliance in the homestretch, showing good improvement over his last run. He had three in front of him on entering the straight. Sunny Seas was fighting a losing battle after leading them in, Arizona Sun and Wind And Stars were going at each other when Undisputed with jockey Neeraj Rawal astride came with tearing hurry to get past. Once ahead, Undisputed kept the pressure on and even though Golden Belle came with threatening strides, Undisputed held his ground to pull it off at staggering odds. Golden Belle ran a close second while Hirohama ended a good third. Valentino came from behind to fill the frame.

Babylon (Glory of Dancer – Bravissima, Nanoli Stud) reproduced his Pune form and that was all he needed for him to open his Mumbai campaign on a winning note. Remembrance of You seemed to have stolen amarch and looked on course, particularly with favourite Itscaro not starting up to throttle. Babylon arrived with a big gallop to stun the leader close home. Sentimental warmed up far too late and had to be content with the third spot. Vision of Romance too showed improvement over his last poor run and did well to come from the rear to end up on the frame.

Critics Choice (Tariq – Berkeley Lodge, Pratap Stud) made ample amends for her Pune failure and bounced back with a tremendous finishing run. She was in the mid-bunch at the turn with Locarno leading them into the straight. Shining Melody made smooth progress to surge into the lead early in the straight. However, once Critics Choice arrived with Malcolm Kharadi astride, it was all over. The Hosidar Daji trainee swooped on them all to draw away in the final 100 meters to notch up a very impressive victory. Shining Melody found one too good for the day, but will have to bide his time. Zambian too improved places to run with the money.

Earl Grey (Verglas – Lethal Lady, Nanoli Stud) showed no sign of a rather long layoff to produce a smooth and spirited gallop to win handsomely. Favorite Peppercorn did most things right and was up in front leading the field into the homestretch. He shook off those close behind and started to dart forward working up a handy lead. Earl Grey started to improve from the outside and in the final furlong had warmed up nicely to work up a good pace at the finish. She surged past Peppercorn with easy to run away showing fine acceleration, notching up a comfortable victory. Peppercorn ended a good second while Desert Lily managed to stay ahead for the place money with Olivia Kaspen coming from the rear to finish in the frame.

Ivor Fernandes trained Amazon Cat (Sharp Attack – Amazon Sky, Gee Stud) got his trainer his Christmas gift with a well fought victory with another outsider Deltin in a half-length finish. The well-backed Lovable Locks had a disastrous start losing over five lengths coming off the gates. Tareef darted into the lead and galloped at a good clip to be a couple of lengths ahead on turning for home. He kicked on ahead until past the 400 which is when Deltin and Amazon Cat started to move in. The pair fought it out a few strides but Amazon Cat looked the better of the two. Lovable Locks improved commendably and arrived a wee bit too late. She did well to finish on a close third.

For the professionals, jockey A Sandesh was by far the top performer with four wins to show. Trainer AM Jadhav saddled a double.