PASS MUSTER and Phillip Makin prevailed by a short-head in a thrilling finish to the £20,000 totepool Musselburgh Gold Cup.
Sent off at 17-2 and running on the Flat for the first time in 489 days, Philip Kirby’s seven-year-old hung on bravely from the rallying Bright Abbey.
The Middleham raider has winning course form over hurdles this season and Kirby said: “That’s brilliant and I’m thrilled for him as he’s a class horse. Things need to drop right for him and he’s slipped to a nice mark.”
Alex My Boy and Joe Fanning took the tote TentoFollow.com Enter Now EBF Stallions Maiden Stakes by three lengths from New Tarabela. Returned evens, the Dalakhani colt continued Mark Johnston’s flying start to the turf campaign and his wife Deirdre said: “He has always needed this sort of trip and he is a nice, staying type of horse.”
Ben Curtis and Alan Swinbank completed a 44-1 double with Libran and Eutropius.
Irishman Curtis, who braved a bout of tonsillitis to participate at the East Lothian track, said: “It’s always nice to have a double even though I’ve a few and ride out for Mr Swinbank, Karl Burke, Brian Ellison, Alan McCabe and anyone else who will have me.”
Weekend racing in England was distinctly sedate as punters gear up for the forthcoming Classics at Newmarket, but trainer Richard Hannon and on-song jockey Ryan Moore still had plenty to shout about in the Betfred Mobile Lotto Snowdrop Fillies’ Stakes at Kempton Park. Fourth in the French 1000 Guineas last season, Zurigha (10-11 favourite) was wisely guided to victory by Moore, who recorded a significant treble on the card.
Hannon’s inmate was never too far off the speed as Senafe took the field along at an initial lackadaisical gallop, but Moore went for the jugular just before the one-furlong pole.
Ribbons was moored towards the rear of the hunting pack for most of the one-mile journey and came with a surging late dash to take second spot, beaten a length and a quarter.
Hannon said: “That’s her second Listed win and I think she’ll win a Group race, although we might have to go abroad to get that.”
Hannon then sent out his first winner for the Queen when Sea Shanty landed the Betfred Mobile Sports Handicap. The first-season Wiltshire handler has Royal Ascot on the horizon for the 5-1 scorer after Moore’s partner flashed three-quarters of a length clear of Tigers Tale. Hannon said: “All roads now lead to the Hunt Cup and I’m happy to give him time to get over this.”
Moore brought up the treble when Queen Of Ice proved too strong for Midnite Angel in the Betfred Supports Jack Berry House Fillies’ Conditions Stakes.
Streams Of Whiskey came up trumps after a grandstand finish to the totescoop6 The Millionaire Maker Handicap Chase at Haydock.