What's happening at Brighton

Race Meeting Report - September 17th

Mon, Sep 17, 2012

The going was changed to firm after the first race on a bright, breezy day. The rail turning into the home straight was set well away from the inside, so that runners were propelled up the centre of the track unless they opted to dart over to the far side after the temporary rail ended two and a half furlongs out.

John Gosden's Tropical Song was a long odds-on favourite when beaten in his previous race and today at odds of 1/6 he was no more than workmanlike in the seven furlong opener. He made all the running, and had to be asked for an effort at the end to win by three lengths. Having said that the others never really looked like getting to him.

In contrast the recent winner Light Burst (13/8 favourite) was going conspicuously well throughout the mile handicap and once hitting the front a furlong out went eight lengths clear with ease. This was a first Brighton winner for new trainer Ismail Mohammed.

John Spearing's Clear Spring (3/1 joint favourite) has been in good form, winning four of his last six races, and he notched another success in the six furlong sprint, shooting clear a furlong and a half out. The other joint favourite Lunar Deity ran on well to close the gap to a length at the end.

The fourth race was one of Brighton's annual highlights, the Ian Carnaby seller over a mile and a quarter. Almost all of the field were in line two out. While some got in each other's way on the fence, the morning gamble (from 14/1 to an SP of 9/2) High Five Prince strolled up the centre of the course to win by nine lengths. The rider modestly reported that she had hit the front too soon.

A vigorous ride by Luke Morris carried Critical Point (5/1) to victory in the mile and a half handicap. They overcame being squeezed for room three out, the horse gamely responding to his jockey's urgings. He seemed to have quite a hard race and it will be interesting to see whether Sir Mark Prescott will ask him to fulfil any of his other entries this week.

Trainer David Simcock enhanced his good record at the track by sending out Malekat Jamal (9/2) to win the seven furlong handicap. She ran on strongly to pass Stonecrabstomorrow in the last hundred yards. The runner-up had got to the front a furlong and a half out after an even worse start than usual, but over a trip slightly beyond his best could not hold the improving filly.

The last race, a sprint, was won by the favourite. Mother Jones (11/8), who had run second at Bath the day before, pulled hard in the early stages. Richard Hughes was able to hold her in behind runners until the final furlong, when six of the seven were in line. Whitecrest and Mother Jones forged ahead, and the latter got the verdict by a short head.

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Jim Beavis