Sandown: Toormore hangs tough to take victory in Mile

Toormore - William Buick wins from Dutch Connection

Toormore and William Buick win from Dutch Connection

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham (  

Report: Sandown, Friday

bet365 Mile (Group 2) 1m, 4yo+

TOORMORE only found stablemate Night Of Thunder too good in the Al Shaqab Lockinge last season, and he will head to Newbury off the back of a battling success.

One of three runners owned by Godolphin in the race, the Richard Hannon-trained five-year-old did well to fend off Dutch Connection, with favourite Belardo only fourth.

The other Godolphin runner, outsider Barchan, had set a very strong gallop, and Belardo was unable to close in the home straight, having been towards the rear.

Paddy Power cut Toormore to 7-1 (from 10) for the Lockinge, and made Dutch Connection a 10-1 chance (from 14).

Winning jockey William Buick said: “He’s such a lovely horse and a joy to ride. We went very quick but he’s won from being in behind and from being in front.

“It looked like he was beaten a furlong and a half out but he really battled back. He’s a high quality horse. He came very close to winning the Lockinge last year and that’s his aim again.”

My Dream Boat (Adam Kirby, 2nd right)

My Dream Boat and Adam Kirby (second right) come with a winning run

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Also on Friday

Sandown: bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes (Group 3) 1m2f, 4yo+

A PATIENT ride by Adam Kirby was rewarded as My Dream Boat claimed Western Hymn late on to win for Clive Cox and owners Paul and Clare Rooney.

The four-year-old had to concede 3lb to the field having won a Group 3 at Saint-Cloud last November, and was last with a furlong and a half left, before finding generously for pressure.

There was support late on for My Dream Boat, who returned at 8-1 having opened on course at 12-1.

Western Hymn, successful in the race last year for John Gosden and Frankie Dettori, was sent off at odds-on, and held every chance.

The five-year-old raced awkwardly in the home straight, but kept repelling challengers, only to be picked off late, going down by a length and a quarter.

Kirby was enthusiastic about the potential of My Dream Boat, and said: “He had a bit to do but he was finishing well. I knew if I had enough room I would get through. He’s improving and not just in little bits.

“He’s really improving and has got a good attitude. He’s a very, very nice horse and if he keeps improving the sky’s the limit.”

Paddy Power cut My Dream Boat to 25-1 (from 33) for the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot.


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