COLWICK CUP MOVES STEP CLOSER FOR MUKHA WHO PRODUCES MORE MAGIC

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Connections of Mukha Magic heaped praise on trainer Gay Kelleway after he conjured up his fourth victory of the campaign at Nottingham today to set up a potential return to the track on Friday for the £35,000 Weatherbys Bloodstock Pro Colwick Cup. 

It has been a season to savour for the six year old gelding who continued his fine run when taking a drop back in trip in his stride in the Bet At racingtv.comHandicap (1m 6f), which doubled up as a Jockey Club Grassroots Stayers Series Qualifier. 

Hitting the front just outside the furlong pole, the 7-2 chance stuck to the task gamely under Robert Havlin before holding off rallying 6-4 Favourite Gordons Aura by a length and three quarters to move a step closer to an outing in the Colwick Cup. 

William Robinson, part owner, said: “He is having a good season. It is all down to the trainer who has got him right as he has had a few problems.

“I’ve been involved in horses with Gay for three years. What I like about her is she is straightforward and straight talking – a bit like me.

“The drop back in trip to a mile six was a bit of a concern for me but not for Gay. I think he prefers two mile and in fact he was going well at the end.

“I think this was a warmer race than the other week but he is on fire and Gay’s yard is doing well.

“If they win it doesn’t matter what level they are. We will possibly come back for the Colwick Cup but Gay will just check him tonight before a decision is made on that.”

Man of the moment Jason Hart showed remained as level headed as ever after steering debutant Struth to a facile success in the Irish EBF Restricted Maiden Stakes (1m ½f).

Despite showing signs of greenness in the extended mile prize under Hart, who secured his first Group One victory aboard Highfield Princess in the Prix Maurice de Gheest on Sunday, the 13-2 chance strode out well to prevail by three and three-quarter lengths.

Hart said of the Charlie and Mark Johnston-trained winner: “It was a nice debut and he won in spite of being very green.

“I think where we were drawn it helped me (stall eight) as he was a bit green through the first furlong and a half and it helped me get a nice position. He is a horse that feels like he will stay strongly.

“He has got a good attitude and there is more to come while he will sharpen up for the run. It was a nice performance.”

Reflecting on his first top-level success at Deauville at the weekend the 27 year old admitted the victory was made even more special with it coming aboard a horse trained by John Quinn. 

He said: “You have to keep looking forward in this game. The main thing for me was that I rode my first Group One winner for John Quinn as he has supported me for a hell of a lot of years and he has stood by me so it was good to get it for him.

“It is a great story not just for her owner but any owner looking in as you can see a filly progress from being rated 57 to winning a Group One. It shows you can dream high.”

Jockey Frederick Larson thanked The Horse Watchers for standing by him after Night On Earth ended a nine-race losing streak when bouncing back from a quick turnaround at Doncaster last week to land the feature It Pays To Buy Irish EBF Conditions Stakes. 

Out of luck since registering victory on the all-weather at Lingfield in April the 4-1 chance, whose owners include Racing TV presenters Chris and Martin Dixon, was not for passing in the five-furlong feature, which he claimed by a length and a quarter. Trainer Mick Appleby was winning the race for the second year in succession following the success of Danzeno in 2021.

Larson said: “He is game and has so much early toe. He would prefer a downhill track and if I had not lost an iron at Goodwood he would have probably won that day. 

“To be beaten by such a short distance by last year’s winner (Lord Riddiford) was a shame as that would have been my first Goodwood winner. 

“It was great the Horse Watchers put faith in me. He had a lot of weight to find with the top ones in the race today but the horse has shown how tough and game he is. 

“When he gets going and nothing takes him on he is a hard horse to pass. He is so well balanced for a big round actioned horse.”

Members of Roudee Racing might have already enjoyed a day to remember this year after watching Glorious Angel contest the Lily Agnes Conditions Stakes at Chester, and they had further cause for celebration in the opening Join Racing TV Now Nursery Handicap. 

Out of luck in three starts since breaking her maiden tag at Redcar in May the Hugo Palmer trained daughter of Cotai Glory made the most of a two pound drop in the weights with a length and a quarter success under Ross Coakley on his sole ride. 

Pete McCulloch, travelling head lad, said of the successful 9-2 chance: “Roudee Racing is all about racing on the Roodee and she ran in the Lily Agnes which was the owners dream. 

“She ran in a valuable nursery at Newmarket last time but this drop in grade and being ridden with a bit more restraint worked out.

“They are lovely owners and really passionate about the sport.” Apprentice Aiden Brookes brought up an 11-1 double when successful in the final two races. In the Watch On Racing TV Handicap (6f), the 18 year old took the honours on 9-4 Joint-Favourite Cooperation (Mike Murphy & Michael Keady) and in the concluding Every Race Live On Racing TV Apprentice Handicap (1m 2f), Brookes partnered the Roy Bowring-trained Nine Elms (11-4 Favourite) to success

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