Saturday 7 October 2017

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Richard Fahey was clearly determined to break his duck in Redcar’s richest race of the season this afternoon as the seaside track staged its first Oktoberfest Beer Festival Day.

The Malton trainer entered eight runners and he was the toast of Redcar as his filly Darkanna justified favouritism under Barry McHugh to land the prestigious Totepool Two-Year-Old Trophy with a total prize fund of £175,000.

Darkanna had been less than four lengths behind Aidan O’Brien’s One Thousand Guineas favourite Clemmie at Newmarket a week ago and the classic form worked out well as the Dark Angel filly won readily from Newmarket raider Flying Sparkle.

A delighted McHugh said after the race: “Everything went to plan. She was a bit keen for a stride or two but I managed to get her relaxed and when I asked her to pick up she put the race to bed. She’s so tough and genuine. I’d like to thank Richard Fahey and the owners for giving me the ride.”

The other highlight on another eight-race card at Redcar was a hat-trick for southern-based jockey Dane O’Neill. The treble got off to a flying start in the first race when Shuhood won division one of the Jacks Coaches EBF Stalllions Novice Stakes. Trained by Richard Hannon and owned by Hamdan Al Maktoum, the bay colt started at surprisingly generous odds of 25-1.

O’Neill’s second winner came, impressively, aboard Charles Hills’ Lambourn raider Jallota in the listed Totescoop EBF Stallions Guisborough Stakes.

He went on to complete the treble when 11-2 shot Khamaary showed the typical toughness of a Mark Johnston runner by making just about all in the Racing UK Straight-Mile Series Final.

Khamaary had won her qualifier in a canter at Redcar earlier in the season and assistant trainer Jock Bennett expressed surprise that she didn’t start favourite. “She just keeps trying. We’re not sure yet whether she stays in training next year but she’s probably even better on better ground.”

Hayley Turner is riding as well as ever after returning to the saddle and she was all smiles in the winner’s enclosure after landing the Market Cross Jewellers Handicap Stakes with a gem of a ride on George Scott’s Newmarket raider Road to Dubai.

David O’Meara maintained his cracking strike rate at the track when Three Saints Bay took a tight division two of the Jacks Coaches EBF Stallions Novice Stakes under David Nolan.

Miningrocks has given his owners a lot of run and was winning for the eighth time when showing plenty of tenacity to win the seller for seven pound claimer Ger O’Neill and trainer Declan Carroll before being “bought in” for £6,500.

The eight-race card was brought to a finale when Eric Alston’s Lydiate Lady surged clear from runner-up Astrophysics under a confident Neil Farley ride.

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