23 Sep September 2015
4th places for both Epeius and Lady Lekki after promising runs at Beverley
After a quiet start to the month Ben takes both Epeius and Lady Lekki to Beverley on 16th September.
Epeius, a 2 year old colt by Arakan, runs in a 7 furlong 100 yards maiden race following his good 5th in his debut run in a similar race at Newcastle just over 2 months ago. Ridden, as in the Newcastle race, by Graham Lee Epeius is in midfield for much of the race but stays on nicely inside the final furlong to take 4th place, beaten just over a length and a half. These have been 2 good performances by Epeius who runs in the colours of the Trojan Horse Partnership and Ben will look to build on the promise Epeius has shown in his first 2 races in the near future.
Lady Lekki has already made a a tremendous start to her racing career, the 3 year old filly out of Champs Elysees having been successful on her first racecourse appearance over 1 mile at Wetherby at the end of April. Today Ben steps Lady Lekki up to a mile and a half to contest a Class 4 handicap at the East Yorkshire course under the talented apprentice Megan Nicholls. Lady Lekki dwells coming out of the stalls and is held up at the back of the field in the early part of the race. Turning into the straight Lady Lekki starts to make ground on the outside of the 7 runner field and runs on well in the final 2 furlongs to take 4th place at the line having started at the generous odds of 20-1. This is only the second race of her career and is another good performance by Lady Lekki in a good class handicap following a near 5 month break, and can only auger well for the future. Ben is pleased with the way Lady Lekki, who is owned by our own Go Alfresco Racing syndicate, ran on in the closing stages and may again up the filly in distance for her next run.
Ever So Much narrowly loses out in a tight finish at Uttoxeter
On Sunday 20th Ever So Much makes the trip down to Uttoxeter in a bid to follow up his win at Bangor a month earlier. His race this time is a 2 and a half mile hurdle in which he is again partnered by Andrew Tinkler. Andrew has J P McManus’s 6 year old nicely positioned on the outside of the field in the early part of the race, going third with a circuit to go. Ever So Much takes second place entering the straight and joins the leader at the second last. Both horses battle well but although Andrew rides another fine race Ever So Much has to give second best to his rival and after a determined race to the line is beaten just a length. This is another good run from Ever So Much and Ben may look to give him another race before the month is out whilst the ground remains good.
Another 2nd place for Ever So Much at Sedgefield
9 days later and Ever So Much makes the shorter journey to Sedgefield to contest a similar Class 4 handicap hurdle over 2 and a half miles. Again Andrew Tinkler takes the ride and as at Uttoxeter has Ever So Much well placed on the outside of the 7 runners just behind the leaders. 3 hurdles out Ever So Much comes to join the leaders but despite keeping on well in second place cannot quite get to the leader and once again has to settle for 2nd place.
Knocklong runs his best race since joining Ben in taking 4th place at Southwell
On the same day, and just 25 minutes after Ever So Much’s Sedgefield race, Ben runs another of J P McManus’s horses, Knocklong, in a 3 mile conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle at Southwell under Freddie Mitchell, having his first ride for Ben. Knocklong races in second place throughout much of the race until after the 3rd last hurdle when he loses a couple of places to be a still close 4th. Despite running on well he cannot catch the leaders and has to settle for 4th place at the line, beaten just under 11 lengths with the remainder of the field tailed off. Nevertheless this is probably Knocklong’s best run since joining Ben in March.