Wednesday, 16 April 2014
Surprise winner of Coral Scottish Grand National at Ayr Racecourse
By: Iain Ferguson
CROWDS of more than 15,000 flocked to Ayr Racecourse last Saturday 12 April for the Coral Scottish Grand National, which produced a shock 40/1 winner Al Co (pictured below) for trainer Peter Bowen and jockey Jamie Moore.
The surprise win stunned the packed stands, and last year’s winner Godsmejudge was a gallant second, with Trustan Times third and Merry King fourth.
A jubilant Jamie Moore said afterwards: “My horse was always travelling well, and my only concern was when he jinked inside the final furlong and almost threw me off. What a year it’s been for me, winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup and now the Coral Scottish Grand National.”
And trainer Peter Bowen who made the marathon trip from his Pembrokeshire stable added: “I had a quiet fancy for the horse. I’d prepared him for this race, and I had him spot on. I told people to back him each way.”
The main supporting race on the day, the QTS Scottish Champion Hurdle saw the even money favourite My Tent Or Yours for the powerful Nicky Henderson-AP McCoy partnership beaten into third place behind Cockney Sparrow (12/1) and last year’s winner Court Minstrel.
It was a Scottish Grand National Day - Ayr Gold Cup Day double for the John Quinn trained Cockney Sparrow, as he won at Ayr’s big flat meeting too.
A highly impressive winner of the Arcadia Consulting Future Champions Chase for the Vulmidas Cup was Eduard (7/4) from the Nicky Richards yard and ridden by veteran jockey Brian Harding.
The 6 year-old saw off the highly rated Valdez by 20 lengths and looks to be destined for more glory next season.
Other winners on Saturday included a double for Paul Nicholls with Silsol in the opening Clyde and Solway Systems handicap hurdle ridden by Jack Sherwood and Brother Du Berlais in the Ayrshire Hospice Making Today Matter Handicap.
And there was a win for Le Bacardy in the Scotty Brand Handicap Chase, a horse that had finished second on Friday.
Friday’s card saw Scotch Warrior, trained near Galston by Mike Smith, land the feature race, the Hillhouse Quarry Handicap Chase in the hands of Wilson Renwick.
And Jim Goldie’s Too Cool To Fool kept up his fine form at the track when winning the Porcelanosa Scotland Novices Limited Handicap Hurdle under young Dale Irving.
START OF THE FLAT
THE 2014 flat season at Ayr Racecourse launches on Sunday 27 April with the freebets.co.uk Raceday featuring seven races.
This earlier than usual start of the season at Ayr is sure to prove popular with leading riders including Graham Lee, Danny Tudhope and Tom Eaves all likely to be in action.
The feature race of the afternoon is the Free Bets At Freebets.co.uk Handicap over a mile at 4.30pm and the action ends at 5.00pm with the longest race of the day, the one mile five furlongs Betting Offers At Onlinebettingoffers.co.uk Handicap.
Gates open at 12 noon with the first race at 2.00pm.
For more information call 01292 264179 or go online www.ayr-racecourse.co.uk
For further information please contact Iain Ferguson on 01292 294972 or 07795 565691.
Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are Founder Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.