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Iron Age maintains supremacy with an effortless win

By: Frankel   December 25 , 2020

Imtiaz Sait trained Iron Age maintained his supremacy with an effortless win in the 1200 metres Christmas Cup, a terms race for four-year-olds and over, the feature event of Christmas Day Mumbai races held on Friday. The speedy son of Strong Suit from the Manjri Stud Farm raced all alone in front and jockey Y S Srinath was not required to exert himself on the favourite.

Iron Age had remained unbeaten on the Pune track and now back on the track which had earned him an imposing reputation, Iron Age bounced off the gates with alacrity and led by lengths which he maintained till passing the winning post. The only aberration in Iron Age`s performance had come at Mysore where he had flopped in the Gr 1 Sprinters Cup. Intense Stylist who was expected to stretch the favourite could not do so as he lacked the extra gear needed to overhaul the favourite and had to settle for the second spot. Gazino held off August Caesar taking the third spot more than five lengths adrift of the runner-up.

Another top sprinter in the making is Shiraz Sunderji trained Kildare kept up his progress with an easy win in the 1200 metres Beautiful Stranger Plate, a race for horses rated 60 to 86. Backed strongly to win on the back of a forward run, Kildare was settled in a handy second position by jockey Sandesh as Golden Quest did the front-running. Sandesh got busy on Kildare on turning for home and the favourite quickly overwhelmed the front-runner and stretched well to win by a widening margin of three lengths over Golden Quest who stayed on. Last start winner Mystic Bay ran on strongly to edge out Excellent Gold to get the third position.

Karthik Ganapathy trained Ladida recorded her maiden win with an impressive performance in the 1600metres Alma Mater Plate, a race for maiden three-year-olds. Cabo Da Roca was the preferred horse in the betting though there is no legal betting on these races, the same goes on in full force in the outside betting channels. Kingsway led the field till turning for home and in the stretch, Irina held sway briefly. Ladida made swift progress from about the fifth position at the final bend and gathered steam on the wide outside and won pulling up from Irina. Cabo Da Roca made lethargic progress and finished a tame third and did not make any improvement on his previous run.

Sandesh drove out Shiraz Sunderji trained Powerful Lady to a narrow win over the more fancied Costa Rica in the 1200 metres Cardinal Plate, a race for horses rated 20 to 46 but confined to three-year-old maidens only. Sandesh had Powerful Lady racing in a handy third position before going for broke at the top of the straight and establish what turned out to be a winning lead. Costa Rica came up with a big effort but found the front-runner escape to the safety of the winning post. Super Girl ran on to take the third position.

The first and only race for two-year-olds of the year saw Karthik Ganapathy trained Aries prevailing over Fast Rain in the 1200 metres Conrad Hotels Pune Trophy. Dragoness who was favoured in the betting was fractious at the gates and was withdrawn from the fray. It was difficult to pick any horse to win with conviction as the ones in the fray had also not stood out in terms of preparatory workouts. Fast Rain had the first run on his opponents at the top of the straight with Aries joining him on the wide outside. The two fought out the issue, with Aries prevailing in the end with a measure of comfort. Nishk was third several lengths adrift of Fast Rain.

When Narendra Lagad has many runners in the fray in the race meant for the lowest class, invariably the lesser fancied one prevails. And it proved so in the 1200 metres Murioi Plate (Div I), a race for horses rated 4 to 30 which is the exclusive preserve this veteran trainer. Arabian Storm was the more strongly fancied runner in the race but it was Abraxas, with apprentice Aniket Karande in the saddle, who pulled it off with ease from Colosseum and Saltbae. Arabian Storm was a well-beaten fourth. Lagad won the lower division of the race too where Northern Singer proved too good for the field winning by a margin of over five lengths. Tristar was second ahead of Gold Member.

Trainer Himmat Singh who had saddled a winner through Sandalphon after a long gap was successful with the same horse again. Sandalphon proved too good for the field in the 1400 metres Conrad Pereira Trophy, a race for horses rated 20 to 46, leaving the field stranded in the final furlong to win by a margin of over five lengths. Last start winner Retained Asset got the second position ahead of Romanesque.

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