Flaming Spear hits the target on the Knavesmire

Thu 24 Aug 2017

Flaming Spear demonstrated a touch of class to gain the most significant success of his career in the Clipper Logistics Handicap at York.

Although well held at Ascot over seven furlongs last time out, the giant five-year-old, who finished down the field in the French 2000 Guineas in his younger days, got his career back on track with a comfortable success on his return to a mile.

Sweeping to the front inside the final furlong, the Kevin Ryan-trained gelding was not for catching, with Robert Winston only required to push the 10-1 chance out close to the line to score by a length and three-quarters from Qassem.

Ryan said: "He's always been a talented horse, but for one reason or another he lost his way. We changed a few things around and winning a few races seemed to get his confidence back.

"We are not going to rush him back, but we hope he can get to the level we think he is capable of reaching. He will be (a Pattern horse).

"We'll have to see what the handicapper does and make a plan for the autumn."

Hugo Palmer said of Qassem: "You'd have to be thinking of the Balmoral on Champions Day now as he needs cut in the ground. He's also in the Cambridgeshire and if it came up soft he could go for that."

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