Watch an astonishing finish to the first race at Ascot on Saturday when the favourite prevailed against all the odds.
By Andy Stephens
There was remarkable drama in the opening juvenile hurdle at Ascot on Saturday when odds-on favourite Nayati gained the most unlikely of wins after trading at the maximum price of 999-1 in-running on Betfair.
The six-runner contest looked between Et Moi Alors and long-time leader Harmonise approaching the final flight but the former, having traded at 1.03, fell and brought down his pursuer, who himself had been matched at 1.13.
Their departures seemed to have left the race at the mercy of Oistrakh Le Noir, who traded at 1.06, but he was collared in the final strides by the Alan King-trained Nayati, ridden by Wayne Hutchinson.
The runners and riders all emerged unscathed.
Supporters of Nayati, sent off the 8-11 market leader, had probably long given up on him following up his debut win at Newbury but he stayed on well to snatch the spoils by a neck. A total of £128 was matched on the winner at 1000.
King was winning the race for the third time since 2012 but will rarely have a luckier success.
"He was a very fortunate winner and he might have run well to finish third if the other two stood up,” said Ollie Wardle, King’s assistant trainer.
"In all fairness, he knuckled down to get to the line. He will be a better horse when he runs on better ground.
"He made the mistake mid-race and that stopped him in his tracks. He is not a speed horse and is more of a galloping type.
"We will have to step him up now into deeper water to see what we really have."
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