Resilience, an unlucky nap when beaten a head and a neck by Thunder Queen and Janaat over six furlongs of Wolverhampton tapeta last week, returns to course and distance for division one of an eleven-runner Novice Stakes this afternoon when veteran jockey John Egan is replaced by Callum Shepherd on Sylvester Kirk’s consistent thrice-raced charge!
Drawn one Resilience didn’t quite ‘hit the gate’ but was prominent on the inside where he pulled considerably, which obviously was unsatisfactory; turning into the straight Egan had a choice to wait until a gap appeared on the rails but surprisingly opted to gain the lead by pulling out, and this Aclaim gelding challenged for the lead fully two furlongs from home, down the centre, yards away from the far rail. It proved an injudicious decision.
The effort took its toll in the closing stages where Resilience faded under hard driving and lost out; I’m convinced he wouldn’t be in this line had John waited for another furlong and taken advantage when the original space became wide enough for a bus as the token leader weakened rapidly. Egan reported to stewards his mount had ‘pulled’ as aforementioned, but why?
Was he trying to deflect blame for defeat?
‘Less said the better, and that’s too much’ was always my motto with racehorses and to chronicle events unnecessarily is completely pointless; Jeff Smith owns Resilience!
Obviously it was a good chance squandered and this is much tougher with twice-raced Liangel Hope and progressive Frankito serious rivals.
Liangel Hope, second twice (of 12!) at Chelmsford and on this course and distance, comes out better on time-figures but is drawn wide in nine, alongside Frankito!
‘You can’t beat the draw’ and it might scupper their chances but Resilience doesn’t merit my star selection and is suggested an each-way proposition into consistent, hitherto luckless Zoom Tiger in the six-runner 3-y-o Novice Stakes over nine furlongs as a double.
Earlier William Haggas-trained Ridicule meets enough median criteria requirement when the Dandy Man filly, mount of 5lbs stable apprentice, Adam Farragh, faces fourteen rivals in the Novice Stakes on ‘good to firm’ Bath which has no watering system!
Ridicule has been journeyed a long way for an urgent mission, to gain essential ‘winning brackets!’
‘Champions Day’ was compelling and congratulations go to Oisin Murphy for a third successive jockeys title, to Haggas with Baaeed and Hollie Doyle, superb on Trueshan but the best came at the end when Her Majesty, The Queen made an unexpected appearance, to thunderous applause.
Nowt compares to the English racing scene; never did, never will!
Selections, Pontefract, 1.15 Manila Scouse (nap); Bath, 1.35 Ridicule (e.w); Wolverhampton, 6.00 Resilience (e.w); 8.00 Zoom Tiger (e.w).
Jeffrey Ross, horse-racing correspondent for WMN since 1983 when winning the most prestigious racing journalist award, Sporting Life Naps Table, before winning it a record number of six times collectively in the Racing Post, the current ‘trade’ paper, including 2019