It was a Friday evening of two photographs, as one went our way with SIR PLATO battling back to a game victory at Bath while HAWRIDGE FLYER narrowly lost out at Goodwood.
After a brilliant run of form which saw SIR PLATO win five times last year, four of which came at his beloved Windsor, the Sir Prancealot gelding found himself on a career high mark of 82 and life became pretty tough. However he was only beaten three lengths into sixth on Bank Holiday Monday, where he was unable to make the running in a strong handicap, so we were hopeful he was running into some form. Making a quick reappearance just four days later with top 5lb claimer Jason Watson in the plate, Sir Plato was able to lead from stall one at a sedate early pace. Although he looked likely to be swamped entering the final furlong, indeed he was certainly headed by the runner-up, he battled on gamely to come out on top at the line. With confidence boosted, hopefully he can build on that and he heads to Windsor in a couple of weeks time.
Unfortunately HAWRIDGE FLYER did not come out on top in a tight finish at Goodwood, just failing to get back up to beat Past Master. There was not much pace on in the early stages and he was sensibly ridden handily by the wily John Egan. The pace quickened approaching the final three furlongs and the first two went head to head a long way out. Despite the margin diminishing in the final fifty yards, the line came too soon. While it is always frustrating to lose out so narrowly, it was good to see Hawridge Flyer put his head down and run straight to the line and there are races to be won with him this season.