All’s well at Barbury as we reflect on Who Dares Wins fantastic Plate triumph
July has started well with Fidux following up his winning debut over fences at Hexham with a game victory at Stratford, and with Who Dares Wins having ended a lean period for the Barbury Flat horses when hitting the jackpot in last Saturday’s Northumberland Plate at Newcastle, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the second half of 2019.
Henry Ponsonby, whose nine-strong syndicate – “as enthusiastic racing bunch as you could find” – own Who Dares Wins, admitted that he won’t mind if the August weather is as miserable as that we experienced in most of June as his dual-purpose star enjoys some ease in the going.
He said:”Who Dares Wins is very much ground dependent and he won’t run anywhere if it comes up firm.”
Henry is not looking for a Glorious Goodwood as granted a bit of soft ground he would love to run Who Dares Wins in the Goodwood Cup – “we were third in the race in 2009 with The Betchworth Kid and he was only seventh in the Plate” – and he added that the Ebor and the Cesarewitch would also be on the table if the rest of summer was wet.
“Who Dares Wins has won his owners nine races and amassed more than £286,000 in prize money, having been a star for us over hurdles and on the Flat,” Ponsonby added.
Alan confessed he was relieved to see Who Dares Wins end the mini drought for the Flat team – “we had plenty of places in June but it was frustrating to rack up 50-odd runners on the level without a winner,” he sighed.
Reflecting on the race itself, Alan added:”I was worried early on as Who Dares Wins could not go the pace, but I knew that he’d stay as he has been placed in three Chester Cups and also won the Cesarewitch Trial last season, though I always felt the winning post would come a stride too soon for us.
“In the straight he was picking up the leaders and I thought ‘great we might get a place’. but when Tom Marquand pulled him out before the furlong-pole he really battled and got up on the line.
“Who Dares Wins has been an amazing horse. Remember, besides being placed at Royal Ascot, he also finished in the frame at both the Cheltenham and Aintree Festivals, and the plan for the autumn is to try him over fences and send him novice chasing.”
Meanwhile, hopes are high that Lexington Law might give us another Flat celebration at Thirsk today, while on Friday at Sandown we are looking forward to Beringer in the mile and a quarter handicap in which he has topweight.
Beringer’s four runs this season have all been over the mile and he is equally effective at that distance as the longer trip, but Sandown might just suit him.
He ran really well in the Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot, being beaten less than six lengths, despite having to race up the centre of the track, and with the Esher course bound to ride much faster than the Royal Heath, here’s hoping he can win his second race of the year.