Ridgemont taste the Champagne

Ridgemont taste the Champagne


Ken Nicol: Despite the scratching of their hot favourite Run Fox Run, owners Ridgemont Highlands still annexed the Grade 3 Champagne Stakes at Kenilworth as Nastergal virtually went start to finish under Greg Cheyne.

The Candice Bass-Robinson trained filly has been tried over quite a few different trips.

And while her recent sprint form was encouraging, this was a big step up in class, and she was allowed to go off at 9-1.

But she went to the front soon after the jump, and despite many having chances coming to the final stages fought on doggedly to score by two and a quarter.

Fellow outsiders Ostinato and Crowded House filled the minor places. Favourites Dynamic Diana and Lesedi La Rona failed to fire, and made up the exacta for last.

“She’s a very consistent filly, and we’ll keep her to the shorter trips for now” said Mrs Bass-Robinson.

Earlier 7-20 favourite Platinum Class had won the Grade 3 Final Fling Stakes as expected, cruising clear under a hands and heels Richard Fourie ride.

The Silvano filly sat quite a few lengths off a decent gallop set by Glamorous Life, but strolled past her five rivals with ease to notch a first Graded win by a clearly unextended two and a half.

Pretty good timing if this is indeed her last dance before going to stud.

Anton Marcus was left with only one ride after Run Fox Run was scratched. But Yorktown made his trip worthwhile with an impressive win in Race 2.

Quite a few were fancied in this Maiden Juvenile over 1200m, but Marcus tracked leader Celtic Voyager, and smoothly moved clear over the final 200m to win by four.

“He did everything right. We’ll now put him away and get ready for spring” said Brett Crawford about the Dynasty colt, who is out of dual Grade 1 winner Overarching.

Yorktown should stay a mile and more, and is definitely one to follow.

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