Altaf Hussain trained Silver Flames maintained his winning streak with a hard-fought win in a competitive set in the 1200 metres Evatina Plate, a race for horses rated 80 and above, the feature event of Friday`s Mumbai races. Silver Flames who was bidding for his fourth straight win, had to stave off a strong challenge of the front-running Excellent Gold to justify the strong favouritism.
Though there were just five runners in the fray, barring Frivolous who had no chance, the rest were well matched. Though Excellent Gold hadn`t won for a thousand days, the six-year-old had been running fair races and he was at a weight at which he was a threat to all. Apprentice jockey Kaviraj took Excellent Gold on a start to finish mission and fought on resolutely all the way in the stretch before Silver Flames, under a strong drive by Trevor Patel got the nod close home. Excellent Gold held off Gazino and Intense Stylist to keep the runner-up berth. Frivolous who ran detached from the field ended exactly the way he had begun.
Malesh Narredu trained Mystic Bay had run a fighting second to Sultan Suleiman over an extended trip of seven furlongs and that run was indicative of immediate success for the progeny of Leitir Mor especially over a distance of five furlongs. Mystic Bay went to the post for the 1000 metres P D Bolton Trophy, a race for horses rated 60 to 86, as a strong favourite. After Wild Fire set a fast pace and weakened entering the straight, Mystic Bay moved with big strides to overhaul the front-runner approaching the final furlong and sped clear for an easy win. Golden Quest ran on to take the second position ahead of Sharareh who after a hesitant start and trailing the field covered ground to finish third. Headway ran a disappointing race and was a beaten cause well before the race came to a boil.
Jockey Zervan guided Vishal Gaikwad trained Birkin Blower to victory in the 1200 metres Girl From Ipanema Plate (Div I), a race for maiden three-year-olds only. Market King was the betting rage. Zervan had the well-supported Birkin Blower lead from the start and though he came under pressure in the final furlong, had enough legs to reach the safety of the winning post. Market King lost a possible winning chance when he drifted out under pressure in the final stages of the race. Enlightened was far away third. Fancied Seasons Greetings played up at the gates and was withdrawn from the fray. Sandesh who failed on Market King was successful on another Shiraz Sunderji trainee One Wish who obliged market expectations with a comfortable win over Chancellor who was equally well supported. One Wish chased Rising Sun into the straight and quickly assumed command. Chancellor was in hot pursuit but failed to change gears as it were and had to be satisfied with the runner-up berth. Rising Sun stayed on occupying the third slot.
Pesi Shroff trained Alluring Silver recorded an encore in impressive fashion in the 1400 metres Kanthara Plate, a race for horses rated 20 to 46. Aspiration led the field into the straight before fading out of the reckoning. Suraj Narredu who had Alluring River handily placed in the third position had no problem in getting the favourite to stretch out. Alluring Silver devoured ground and went away for a win by a widening margin of five lengths over Dreams and Dumas. Alluring Silver should be in the line up for the Indian 1000 Guineas where Bangalore challenger Forest Flame is expected to run as a hot favourite.
The money was well directed in the 1800 metres Wild Eagle Plate, a race for horses in the lowest category. Malesh Narredu trained Historian was in receipt of strong support along with Resolute. C S Jodha took Resolute on a start to finish mission and the fancied runner enjoyed an uncontested lead. Historian who lacked early speed was placed in about the sixth position. Trevor brought Historian with a smooth run to be in a handy position at the final bend. Resolute battled on though he was under pressure to keep the lead from Martini. Even as Resolute was fending off Martini, Historian came up with a big effort on the wide outside and got the lead in the final 100 metres and went away for a comfortable win by a margin of over three lengths. Peerless managed to snatch the third position from Martini. The run benefit that Historian had stood him in good stead.
Shiraz Sunderji who saddled a brace of winners was successful through the well-backed Revelator in the opening race of the day. Last start winner Belenus led from the start and kept it till going into the final furlong. Revelator covered the leeway from about the fourth position with a ground-saving effort and overhauled the front-runner in the final furlong. Belenus held off Majestic Warrior and Palomar to keep the runner-up berth.
Revelator (A Sandesh up) winner of the Keukenhof Plate
Alluring Silver (Suraj Narredu up) winner of the Kanthara Plate
Mystic Bay (Trevor Patel up) winner of the P D Bolton Trophy
One Wish (A Sandesh up) winner of the Girl From Ipanema Plate (Div-II)
Silver Flames (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Evatina Plate
Birkin Blower (S Zervan up) winner of the Girl From Ipanema Plate (Div-I)
Historian (Trevor Patel up) winner of the Wild Eagle Plate