Richard Hannon to raise the bar with Sandown scorer Tajaanus

Fri 28 Jul 2017

Richard Hannon can become more ambitious with Tajaanus following her victory in the Longines Irish Champions Weekend EBF Stallions Star Stakes at Sandown.

The daughter of Arcano suffered trouble in running at Newmarket last time but had no such problems in this Listed heat as she took the step up to seven furlongs in her stride.

Having powered past stablemate Billesdon Brook deep inside the final furlong, the 8-1 shot then held off the fast-finishing Capomento by a nose to complete a double for jockey Jim Crowley.

Hannon said: "She's very nice. She was a little unlucky at Newmarket. She's always been a lovely filly that carries a bit of condition.

"We decided not to go to Royal Ascot and that has been to our advantage.

"She's got plenty of racing left in her as that was only her third run.

"Races like the Oh So Sharp (Newmarket) later in the season might be on the agenda. The Dick Poole at Salisbury and the Prestige at Goodwood are others we could look at."

Silver Ghost continued his and trainer Eve Johnson Houghton's fine seasons when he completed a hat-trick in the Watch Racing UK Anywhere Handicap.

The four-year-old ran out a three-length scorer to initiate a double for the winning trainer.

Johnson Houghton said of the 3-1 shot: "He is still improving but obviously the competition is going to get harder but you have to be pleased at the moment. It is hard to complete a hat-trick.

"He doesn't have to make the running, all he needs to do is bowl along and use his rhythm."

Admitting to making mistakes is something rarely done by trainers, but the Blewbury handler did just that after Pondering (14-1) completed Johnson Houghton's brace in the Paddock Fillies' Handicap.

She added: "It just shows you what an idiot I am I should have never run her on firm ground at Bath as she hated it. That was my fault completely.

"She is tough but I didn't expect that. She loves the mud, though."

While Joshua Reynolds still has a way to go to emulate his Group One-winning half-sister Speedy Boarding, he continued his progression when he won the Handicap by three-quarters of a length.

Jockey Adam Kirby said of the John Gosden-trained 15-8 favourite: "When I kicked him in the belly he got on with it for a furlong. He just got a bit lonely and lugged into the fence, then he got that bit of company.

"There is a lot more to come from him and he is still very babyish, that's why he has the blinkers on. He is not ungenuine, it just helps focus him. He is getting the hang of it."

Finale made it two out of two on turf to complete a double for Kirby when she survived a stewards' inquiry to take the ROA/Racing Post Owners Jackpot Handicap by a short head.

Trainer Hughie Morrison said of the 11-10 favourite: "It's always a relief when you get the verdict in an inquiry.

"There is not a lot of her. She has got plenty of speed and that was the end of her tether. She toughed it out. You would not be frightened of going back to seven furlongs."

The line came just in time for the Robert Cowell-trained May Girl (7-1), who got the ball rolling for Crowley when she won the opening British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Fillies' Stakes by a head.

Crowley said: "It is quite a stiff five (furlongs) but she lasted it out. We were barely walking the last furlong. Probably an easy five would suit her better and maybe an easier surface."

Another Boy (9-2), from the yard of Ralph Beckett, opened his account for the campaign with a half-length victory in the Lubricators Handicap.

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