What's happening at Brighton

Race Meeting Report - 19 October 2017

Thu, Oct 19, 2017

The last fixture of the 2017 season was on a murky and sometimes damp afternoon, which is a situation not unknown for a Brighton October meeting. The going for most of the eight races was soft.

The afternoon began with a couple of two-year-old events, both won by well fancied Gary Moore runners ridden by Adam Kirby and favouring the far rail.

In the first of them, over 6f, Sing Out Loud (5/4 fav) moved into the lead on the inside two and a half furlongs out and quickly went clear. Idling in the closing stages allowed the running-on Rotherhithe to get to within half a length. The winner benefited from the drop back in trip after not getting the best of runs when second here last week.

The next was over a mile and King Of The Sand (4/1 from 7s in the morning) galloped his rivals into the ground. He set a strong pace and had them all in trouble by the bottom of the hill. Though many feared he had gone off too fast, the horse had plenty in hand and, with nothing else able to get in a blow, he passed the post four and a half lengths in front of George.

As light rain set in for a while, the middle to stands side became the preferred route up the finishing straight.

The first division of a one mile handicap produced another front-running winner, Break The Silence (8/1). Kieran O'Neill brought him up the centre of the course and though Crystal Sunstone laid down a challenge, that one was outstayed by the leader. With first-time cheekpieces possibly helping him break his duck at the 14th attempt, this three-quarter length success made trainer Scott Dixon's long journey from his Nottinghamshire yard worthwhile.

There was a good finish to the second division. Four-time course winner Pick A Little (85/40 fav) is nine years old now, and had never won on going officially described as soft before. Then again, neither had most of his rivals. Tawfeer disputed the early lead, bagged the stands rail coming into the straight and put up a good fight before the ultra-game veteran got up for a short head victory. Mitch Godwin rode him for Michael Blake, who stated that it was the horse's 92nd run and his 17th win. He likes Brighton so much they'll try to have his 100th start here at some point next summer.

The shortest-priced favourite on the card, Rocksette, looked like landing the 1m2f handicap under the champion jockey Silvestre de Sousa until tying up in the last furlong and being headed near the line by Sussex Girl (6/1). She reversed form with the runner-up despite being on worse terms. Her trainer John Berry is having one of his best ever seasons and this was his third winner of the campaign here. Nicola Currie, beaten in a photo in the previous race, came out a neck in front in this one.

Black Caesar arguably ran a career best when fifth at Ascot recently and he confirmed his wellbeing when taking the lead in the final furlong of the 7f handicap. But behind him Hollie Doyle was weaving her way through the field on Richard Hannon's Procurator (9/1), and they hit the front in the closing strides to score by a head.

Rebel Heart (11/2) broke terrifically well and made all to land the 6f handicap. After her quick start William Carson was able to settle her in front and he elected to stay on the inside coming into the straight. Clear from that stage, nobody else could mount a challenge and she was allowed to ease up at the end, when Treagus ran on from a long way back to finish a length and three quarters away in second. Bill Turner trained the winner.

The day - and the season - ended with yet another who made all. This was in a 5f dash. Spirit Of Rosanna (11/2) had employed aggressive tactics successfully last time out at Bath and the trick worked again. She was very quickly away, kept to the inside, and ran on willingly up the hill to hold off Bella Alissa by half a length. This grey mare is right at the top of her game. Adam Beschizza rode her for Steph Hollinshead.

We will have to wait six months for the next Brighton race meeting, which is on the evening of Tuesday 24 April.

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Jim Beavis