Master Of The Seas got the better of stablemate La Barrosa as Godolphin dominated the finish to the bet365 Craven Stakes at Newmarket on Thursday.
Master Of The Seas had looked every inch a top-class colt in the making when winning the Superlative Stakes on the July Course last summer, and while he could only finish fourth stepped up to Group 1 level for the Vincent O'Brien National Stakes at the Curragh he again showed his ability there.
Although beaten at odds-on by fellow Charlie Appleby-trained colt Naval Crown at Meydan in February, the son of Dubawi was the 11/4 favourite to recoup those losses on the Rowley Mile and ultimately got the job done in pleasing fashion.
Sporting a hood for the first time, Master Of The Seas was keen during the early stages before settling into a rhythm.
His supporters will have been sweating at the halfway stage, with the market leader seemingly stuck behind a wall of horses – but once switched wide for racing room, William Buick’s mount quickly found top gear to run down La Barrosa and score by three-quarters of a length.
?? "As a two-year-old, his form was rock-solid."— Racing TV (@RacingTV) April 15, 2021
William Buick could have an interesting decision to make in the 2000 Guineas at @newmarketrace on Saturday, May 1
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Summerghand finished with a flourish to deny hot favourite Oxted back-to-back victories in the bet365 Abernant Stakes.
The Group 3 contest proved a springboard to Group 1 glory for Roger Teal’s Oxted last season as he successfully moved from the Rowley Mile to the July Course to win the July Cup.
Down the field in the Riyadh Dirt Sprint in Saudi Arabia on his latest appearance, the five-year-old was widely expected to bounce back to back to winning ways on his return turf – but odds-on backers had their fingers burnt by David O’Meara’s stable stalwart Summerghand.
With Ryan Moore taking over in the saddle from the sidelined Cieren Fallon, 8/13 chance Oxted travelled strongly for much of the five-furlong contest before battling his way to the lead inside the closing stages.
However, he was unable to resist the late charge of 7/1 shot Summerghand, who followed up his victory on All-Weather Championships Finals Day at Lingfield less than a fortnight ago by three-quarters of a length under Danny Tudhope.
Tudhope said: “It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s getting better with age, a lot of David’s do, especially sprinters.
“He’s a top-class sprinter and the visors have helped him as well the last two runs.
“The way the race panned out was perfect, he loves having cover and passing horses.
“He likes something to aim at, but in the big handicaps it just never fell right for him. The visors just seem to sharpen him up.”
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