Fifty up for on-song Lee
Tuesday 28 August 2012
Graham Lee rode his 50th winner of an incredible first summer on the Flat when Voodoo Prince provided the jockey with a double in the feature City Of Ripon Stakes at the Garden Racecourse.
The Grand National-winning rider admits he cannot quite believe how well things have gone since he switched codes at the start of the season. And he did not bring up his milestone on just any old horse. Voodoo Prince happens to be the first foal of one of the greatest racemares in recent years, Ouija Board.
Trained, just like his mother, by Ed Dunlop, Voodoo Prince has not been the easiest to handle and has been lightly raced. But in defying a mark of 85, he showed there is plenty of ability, if not quite living up to his breeding. Barren Brook came with a rare rattle from the rear but the 8-1 shot held on by a length.
Lee said: "He's done that well. The pace was generous and even, and he slotted in nicely and picked up well. That's now 50 for the season so it's happy days. I'm just thankful to everybody over how well it's gone."
Dunlop's travelling head lad, Robin Trevor-Jones, said of Voodoo Prince: "He's Ouija Board's first foal so it was always going to be tough for him with all the attention. He's not easy to train as he's not the soundest, so the boss has been patient with him."
Lee also won on the James Given-trained Girl At The Sands (5-1), who beat Tumblewind by half a length in the Sapper Conditions Stakes.
Richard Kingscote will have enjoyed his two days in North Yorkshire as he won the SIS Live Nursery on Silver Ridge - 24 hours after claiming a Listed prize on Monday aboard Deauville Prince. Sent off the 6-4 favourite after running a good race in defeat at Doncaster 60 days ago, the Ralph Beckett-trained Silver Ridge needed to be hard ridden, but eventually saw off Rated by a length and a half.
Kingscote said: "He ground it out well. The drying ground wasn't in his favour - he'd have preferred it cut up like it was yesterday - but he's progressing and is a sweet horse."
Tim Easterby has enjoyed a fruitful season and Hayek (6-1) was winning for the third time in the attheraces.co.uk Handicap. Adam Carter hit the front just inside the final furlong and appeared to have the race in safe-keeping, but Hayek put his head up in the air, allowing Satwa Laird to close to within a neck.
Mel Brittain is another northern trainer enjoying a good season and Balinka justified 5-6 favouritism in the toteswinger Fillies' Maiden Auction Stakes under Silvestre de Sousa. The same jockey and trainer combination later doubled up when Generous Dream (11-1) took the concluding Wakeman Stayers Handicap.