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Matchbook’s £100,000 bonus boosts EBF race series to further enhance the stayers’ programme

Thu 16 May 2019

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A series of races created in 2015 by the BHA and the British European Breeders’ Fund to boost the stayers’ programme, has been provided with a huge financial boost. Matchbook Betting Exchange have teamed up with the EBF to match the EBF’s prize money contribution and put in place a £100,000 bonus for any winner from the series who goes on to win a Group 1 race over 10 furlongs or more in the UK and Ireland in their three year old year.

                                                           

The Matchbook EBF Future Stayers’ Series consists of 16 races, all with an increased minimum prize value of £14,000, are open to the progeny of stallions and mares that had won over distances of 10 furlongs or more. The series begins at Yarmouth on August 7 and runs through to Chelmsford on December 13. Each of the races, to be run over at least 7f, will be worth a minimum of £14,000 and the series has a total value of £283,000.      

Matchbook EBF Media Pack 2019

Philip Mitchell, Chairman of the EBF said:

 

“The bonus is eminently winnable – if it had been in place in the 2016 season for example, Cracksman would have been the first recipient. He won an EBF sire/dam restricted race at Newmarket towards the end of the 2016 season and then went on to win the Champions’ Stakes (Gr.1) at Ascot over 1m2f at the end of his three-year-old career.”           

 

Matchbook CEO Mark Brosnan said:                                                                     

“Matchbook are extremely passionate about the future of horse racing and we want our sponsorships to make a difference, whilst also providing exposure for our brand. We are incredibly excited to partner with the EBF on this innovative initiative, which we believe supports the grassroots of the sport. Horses like Stradivarius and Dee Ex Bee exemplify how this series provides an insight into the staying stars of the future.”

Charlie Appleby, Trainer of Line Of Duty, a star graduate of The Matchbook EBF Future Stayers’ Series, said:

 “It is fantastic to see the EBF supporting and promoting a better programme for middle distance and future staying type horses. The sire/dam restricted races are a great initiative and provide an excellent platform for potential top class horses of this type.”

Appleby hoping Line Of Duty can follow Masar and win Investec Derby

Wed 8 May 2019

LINE OF DUTY wins EBF Sire/ Dam Restricted race at Goodwood 2018

LINE OF DUTY wins EBF Sire/ Dam Restricted race at Goodwood 2018

 

Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby is hoping Line Of Duty can emulate stablemate Masar by winning the 2019 £1.5 million G1 Investec Derby at Epsom Downs on Saturday, June 1, Investec Derby Day and day two of the Investec Derby Festival.

One of British racing’s greatest supporters, Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation has enjoyed G1 and Classic success all over the world, with such winners in 12 countries. Despite its position as a racing powerhouse with approaching 5,500 wins since inception in 1992, until 2018, the Investec Derby, Britain’s richest race, had eluded “the boys in blue”.

Speaking yesterday during a media visit organised by Epsom Downs Racecourse at Moulton Paddock Stables in Newmarket, Appleby said: “Winning the Derby has been the highest point of my career, and for Godolphin and Sheikh Mohammed to do it in the blue colours was a dream.

“We all know how much Sheikh Mohammad puts into the sport. When I stood here six years ago when I started training and people asked me what my goals and ambitions were, obviously to win the Derby was on the agenda and it was fantastic to do that with Masar last year.”

LINE OF DUTY won one of the extremely successful British EBF supported Sire/ Dam Restricted two-year-old races in 2018 at Goodwood.  Having raced twice previously, this was the first win for the son of Galileo in a hat-trick of victories that saw him progress via a French Gr.3 to the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at the end of the season.

Line Of Duty will trial for the Derby in next week’s Group 2 Al Basti Equiworld Dante at York, and Appleby said: “Masar and Line Of Duty have a similar profile in their two-year-old careers and in fact Line Of Duty came up with a better record than Masar, albeit Masar was unlucky at Del Mar.

“You want a horse with experience coming into the Derby and we feel Line Of Duty has that and we’re very pleased with him.”

Line Of Duty is 16-1 for the Derby in a market topped at 9-2 by last year’s unbeaten two-year-old star Too Darn Hot, who missed the 2,000 Guineas due to a splint and is too set to go instead for the Dante next Thursday.

 

Gr.1 performers among entries to Goodwood

Tue 30 Apr 2019

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2018 winner Isabel de Urbina

Goodwood Racecourse stages the Opening Saturday fixture this weekend, May 4, with an excellent seven-race programme featuring two Listed contests for fillies and mares plus the £50,000 Goodwood May Food Festival Handicap.

Coronet, who has raced consistently in Group One races on her past four starts, is the standout among 14 entries for the £50,000 Listed British Stallion Studs EBF Daisy Warwick Stakes (2.05pm) over 12 furlongs. Trained by John Gosden, the five-year-old Dubawi mare finished second in three G1 contests and third in the other during 2018, including an agonising nose defeat by Waldgeist in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud in July.

Gosden won the inaugural running of the British Stallion Studs EBF Daisy Warwick Stakes in 2011 with Gertrude Bell. The Newmarket handler has also engaged Enbihaar, who finished fourth in the Listed Noel Murless Stakes at Ascot in October.   Cheveley Park Stud’s Pilaster, trained by in-form Roger Varian in Newmarket, could return to the scene of her biggest triumph, having landed the G2 Qatar Lillie Langtry Stakes over two furlongs further at the Qatar Goodwood Festival in August.

The homebred Nathaniel four-year-old finished third on her 2019 return in the Listed Further Flight Stakes at Nottingham on April 10. Varian sent out the 2017 winner, Ajman Princess.   Another entry with winning form at Goodwood is Magnolia Springs. The Eve Johnson-Houghton-trained four-year-old captured the 10-furlong Listed Height Of Fashion Stakes at the track in May last year during a light three-year-old campaign. The daughter of Shamardal was sixth on her comeback in a 10-furlong Listed race won by subsequent G3 scorer Morgan Le Faye at Longchamp on April 7.

Johnson-Houghton, based on the Berkshire downs at Blewbury, reported: “Magnolia Springs has done well physically since she won at Goodwood last season.   “I was really pleased with her run behind Morgan Le Faye. We went over to France hoping for some cut in the ground, but it was actually quite quick.   “When you consider that, I thought it was a good effort, and hopefully Goodwood will get a bit of rain to help her.”

Newmarket handler William Haggas has two possible contenders in Klassique, last seen out when just touched off in a G3 contest at Saint-Cloud in October, and lightly-raced Ascot scorer Alexana, who is a half-sister to high-class stayers Duncan and Samuel.

EBF features strongly as Fahey seeks Century

Thu 11 Apr 2019

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Thirsk Racecourse opens its doors this Saturday, April 13, for the first of its 16 fixtures, with an eight-race card running from 2.00pm through to 5.55pm and one trainer about to make history.

Richard Fahey, who is based at Musley Bank, Malton, has saddled 99 winners at Thirsk since he started training in 1993 and has five chances of reaching his landmark century at the course on Saturday.

These include two-year-old Pastoral Pursuits colt Ventura Rebel (Paul Hanagan), who is owned by a Middleham Park Racing syndicate and makes his debut in division two of the five-furlong British EBF Maiden (2.30pm, 11 runners).

Fahey said: “It would be very special to record our 100th winner at Thirsk on Saturday.

“Thirsk is a very fair track and we have run a lot of horses there over the years, having plenty of success.

“We have five runners on Saturday. Ventura Rebel is a two-year-old who has pleased us at home and he is quite forward.”

Fahey has been the leading trainer at Thirsk in each of the past five years. His other runners in EBF races on Saturday are: Kidda 2.00pm British EBF Maiden (Div I)

A trainer who has hit the ground running with two-year-olds in 2019 is Upper Lambourn-based Archie Watson, who has already saddled three juvenile winners from just five runners.

Watson is represented at Thirsk on Saturday by Baileys Freedom (Edward Greatrex), who also goes in division two of the British EBF Maiden. The Baileys Horse Feeds-owned colt is from the first crop of 2015 champion sprinter Muhaarar and finished sixth on debut at Musselburgh on April 2.

Watson said: “Baileys Freedom was very green up at Musselburgh, when he wasn’t drawn very well. He just could have done with another horse on his outside and he might have gone a lot closer.

“That was only his first run and he will come on a lot for it. It was a good experience and hopefully there is more to come.

“Thirsk is a very straightforward track and I am sure he will take a big step forward in the race.”

Saturday’s programme is headlined by the £15,000 EBFstallions.com Michael Foster Conditions Race (4.50pm, six runners), staged over seven furlongs for horses aged four and above.

The contest, run over a furlong shorter prior to 2012, boasts a fine roll of honour, with previous winners including Pipalong (2000) and Markab (2010), who both went on to capture the G1 Haydock Sprint Cup later the same year. Breton Rock took the spoils in 2014 and has since gained three victories at G2 level.

This year’s starters are headed by the 107-rated Muntadab (Roger Fell/Graham Lee), who won a trio of competitive handicaps in 2018 before rounding off the campaign by taking second in the Listed Ben Marshall Stakes at Newmarket in November.

So Beloved (David O’Meara/David Nolan), a G3 winner in 2015, was second in G2 company last year, while six-year-old Flying Pursuit (Tim Easterby/Rachel Richardson) was runner-up in the valuable Coral Sprint at York in 2018 and tackles seven furlongs for just the second time in his career.

Other contenders include Aeolus (Ruth Carr/James Sullivan), who captured the 2015 G3 Chipchase Stakes at Newcastle, and the Khalid Abdullah-owned Vanbrugh (Charlie Hills/Dane O’Neill), who was Listed-placed in France last season for Andre Fabre and makes a first start for his current trainer.

Courtesy of Thirsk Racecourse/ Racenews

 

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