The brilliant Enable won her eighth Group 1 on her reappearance in the Coral Eclipse Stakes at Sandown on Saturday. Having her first start for 245 days and her first over ten furlongs since April 2017, John Gosden's dual Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe winner was ridden prominently by Frankie Dettori before taking over approaching the two furlongs marker. The five year old was in charge thereafter and was value for more than the winning margin of three parts of a length from old rival Magical. Considering the runner-up had a fitness advantage, plus Enable was racing over a trip shy of her best, it was a terrific performance by the daughter of Nathaniel. The King George at Ascot later this month is expected to be next port of call with a return to France in the Autumn very much in the offing.
It was a frustrating day for the featured horses in Ahead On The Flat. Al Muffrih reportedly slipped twice on the hometurn which resulted in Danny Tudhope losing his irons in the Old Newton Cup at Haydock. William Haggas' gelding was going well at the time but it is impossible to say how he would have fared, although I wouldn't have swapped him for anything else at the time. Meantime, another Top 40 entry Mekong was headed in the shadows of the post in the Listed Coral Marathon. Sir Michael Stoute had run very well behind Dee Ex Bee over the same C&D in the Group 3 Henry II Stakes before racing too freely at York last time. Back to form here, he looked to be holding Irish raider Falcon Eight but Frankie Dettori galvanised Dermot Weld's charge and it was the overseas raider who took the spoils with four and a half miles back to the third.
Mind The Crack, who is featured in the Handicap Snips section of AOTF, won his first two starts this season at Lingfield and Haydock. Mark Johnston's progressive gelding looked all set to make it three out of three in 2019 in the opening fourteen furlongs handicap at the latter venue only to be reeled in late on by stablemate Sir Ron Priestley. Partnered by Richard Kingscote and running off a mark of 89, he is likely to revert back to twelve furlongs for another valuable three year old handicap at 'Glorious' Goodwood (0-105 on Wednesday 31st July). The son of Jukebox Jury is capable of winning a big middle distance/staying handicap this year.
On a positive note, Never In Paris (6/1) was selected as an unraced juvenile to follow in the Royal Ascot Update and the Karl Burke trained daughter of No Nay Never made a winning start to her career at Nottingham on Saturday evening. Owned by Ontoawinner, she quickened up well to win going away by two and a quarter lengths in the five furlongs fillies' novice stakes. She looks a nice prospect.
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