Grocer Jack serves a treat from Steventon to Team Haggas
Grocer Jack raced back to his winning form in the bet365 Listed Stakes at Newbury.
Tom Marquand got a good melody from the horse Oasis Dream, who had won a few group three shows in Europe last year before arriving at William Haggas’ Newmarket yard.
Grocer Jack had finished fifth at the Saudi Cup meeting and fourth in a group two at Chantilly in his first two races for the yard, with a change in tactics and a drop in class clearly helping him as he was propelling Cadillac to a nine-length success.
Obviously a positive one and a quarter mile drive is optimal
Marquand said: “It was obviously an expensive purchase from Germany and people saw that hint of what he had in the tank. He’s got really good form in the book.
“Saudi, running on this kind of American-style track, just caught him really hard in his first race for a long time and I got him all wrong in France – I was a slow step and left him fall down and asked him to relax and he never did.
“He actually wasn’t beaten from afar and he had a really good run and we were keen today to race or at least be positive on him and he obviously really enjoyed it. He’s quite lively and strong head.
“I think a mile and two is his trip. He could stay a mile and a half, but I don’t think there would be any rush to get there. Obviously, a positive one and a quarter mile run is optimal.
Team Haggas completed a one-two finish, as did Hollie Doyle, who previously won the Weatherbys Super Sprint, when Morgan Fairy took a comfortable win in the Lifetime In Racing Award Winner British EBF Premier Fillies’ Handicap Stakes.
With her husband Marquand having special dispensation to rush to France to ride My Prospero in the Prix Eugene Adam at Saint-Cloud, Doyle replaced filly Lope De Vega, who had finished in midfield in the Sandringham at Royal Ascot.
The partnership then scored in the mile contest by an easy length and a half.
Maureen Haggas said: “She is fine. She ran well at Ascot and improved from there. She’s learning all the time and she really needs to practice, she needs to race. She did nothing wrong there. The pitch would probably be a bit fast for her – it’s getting pretty fast now.
“We’ll see what the handicapper does and if she could run in another handicap it wouldn’t hurt her, but ultimately if you can get some black type that would be the goal. She’s still a bit green, but she could probably win another handicap.
Former champion jockey Jim Crowley took home number 38 of the season when Reshoun backed up his excellent runner-up effort in the Queen Alexandra at Royal Ascot, doing better in the Highclere Castle Gin Cup.
The eight-year-old trained by Ian Williams became a useful stay and relished the long two-mile journey to score at three-quarter length from Rock Eagle.
Crowley said: “The horse stays very well – that’s the only thing he does – he stays well at two miles and five furlongs or two and three quarters.
“We just had a nice, steady pace and he overtook the others on the day. He needs more than that – he stays longer than the mother-in-law.
Hectic may have been a relatively cheap buy as a £44,000 yearling, but the Massaat colt looked above average when he took on what looked like an ordinary bet365 Novice Stakes renewal in the hands of Pat Dobbs.
The Richard Hannon inmate looks set for a bright future after the 100-30 odds clearly cleared in the closing stages of the six-stadia contest, giving the remaining Alpha Capture a half length, with Lahab a good third tenuous. .
Hannon said: “He’s here to get shot and there’s a lot of improvement coming from him. Dobbsy (Pat Dobbs) loves it. He said it didn’t look like a fast floor – he said the floor was beautiful.
“He’s a lovely horse and will continue to be so in the future. You might think of something like the Acomb in York.
“He’s a really good horse and we’ve got a couple of these guys waiting, taking their time. He’s a pretty big, beefy lad. He’ll go seven furlongs no problem, but has the speed of six furlongs all the way. It’s probably a pretty smart race.
The best videos delivered daily
Watch the stories that matter, straight from your inbox