Wednesday, 2 October 2019
By: Iain Ferguson
THE gods smiled on Ayr’s William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival at Ayr Racecourse with glorious sunshine and high temperatures for the three days, so it was fitting that an Angel swooped to lift the richest prize in Scottish Flat racing.
[Pictured: Angel Alexander swoops to win the
William Hill Ayr Gold Cup at Ayr Racecourse.]
And in a bizarre twist, one of the most famous ex-footballers in the world was screaming at his phone as he sat in the back of his brother’s car cheering the horse on as he watched the drama unfold on his phone.
Former England legend Michael Owen co-owns Angel Alexander with three friends – Peter Birbeck, Keith Trowbridge and Steve Mound - but his contract with BT Sport meant he had to be in London to give his views on the day’s football results instead of being at Ayr to milk the moment.
Within seconds of the three year-old gelding passing the line Owen was texting his pals and tweeting: “Get in there you beauty!!!! I’ve just won the Ayr Gold Cup!!!!!”
The money came in torrents for the Irish-trained Buffer Zone, winner of a valuable sprint at the Curragh six days earlier and who was sent off at the short odds of 100-30.
Angel Alexander, a 28-1 shot, was one of six horses racing on the stands side and his ecstatic jockey Richard Kingscote said: “I knew Tom (Eaves) would try to make it all on Major Jumbo who has plenty early speed so I just followed him and got a great tow into the race.
“I hit the front plenty soon and he wandered a bit but I put my stick down and he straightened up. These big handicaps are hard to win so I’m just going to savour the moment.”
Earlier in the afternoon Golden Apollo landed the William Hill Ayr Silver Cup for trainer Tim Easterby and jockey David Allan.
For a long time in this contest it looked as though Paul Hanagan would prevail on Gabrial The Saint but David Allan’s mount wore them down and despite the Dr Marwan Koukash owned horse rallying, Golden Apollo struck silver by a neck.
Tim Easterby also saddled the winner of Friday’s William Hill Ayr Bronze Cup when Music Society cruised through the race under Paul Mulrennan to win by a length and a half.
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.