Hughes in fourth dimension

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The Independent Online

Richard Hughes showed off his skills by riding four winners at Salisbury yesterday, at accumulated odds of 5232-1. Premier Prize was his most remarkable victory because the 25-1 shot was the complete outsider in a field of seven.

Broken Barricades, at 15-8, Negligee (9-1) and Jasmick (6-1) formed the rest of the Irishman's quartet, but it was the win of Premier Prize in the days's most valuable race, the Listed Upavon Fillies' Stakes, which drew most attention.

The success was not a surprise for trainer David Elsworth, however. After the four-year-old had got the better of favourite Katy Nowaitee by a couple of lengths, Elsworth said: "She's always been a class horse – I ran her in the Oaks. Do people think I'm an idiot or something! I wouldn't have done that last year if I didn't think something of her.

"She was beaten five lengths by a Group One horse of Godolphin's, called Slickly, at Sandown last time, so I was not being optimistic running her in this race."

The trainer added: "Anyway I'm not complaining as I've had a little bit of 33-1 about her this afternoon and now I will try and place her to advantage for the rest of the season."

Elsworth went on to complete a 285-1 double when Mr Ed under apprentice rider Liam Keniry proved a neck too good for Tight Squeeze in the Violet Applin Challenge Cup Handicap.

But it was Hughes who got his afternoon off to the best possible start, with wins on Broken Barricades and Negligee – both trained by Barry Hills – in the two divisions of the Sandown Maiden Stakes.

Aboard Jasmick, in the final contest on the card, Hughes brought his mount with a late run to cut down better-fancied fillies in the final furlong.

Terry Mills, the Epsom trainer, described Where Or When as "the best two-year-old I've ever trained" after the youngster had swooped late in the hands of Richard Quinn to collect the Country Gentlemen's Association Novice Stakes.

The son of Danehill Dancer came with a storming run inside the final two furlongs before lengthening away for a three-and-a-half length verdict over the newcomer Leadership.

"We knew he was quality, that's why we ran him at Ascot first time and he won", stated Mills. "We were a bit disappointed with him at Goodwood last time out but he didn't seem to handle the course. But make no mistake he's very good and we are going to take on the best with him. He's entered up in some big races but I don't know where he'll go at the moment."

One horse who has now successfully made the step up to Group races is John Gosden's Masterful, who yesterday led home a British one-two in the Group Two Prix Guillaume d'Ornano at Deauville.

Two weeks' earlier, Masterful had been well held in second place behind Askham in a £32,500 handicap at Goodwood, but yesterday, in a supposedly much higher grade, Frankie Dettori made all the running on the Manton colt and the 34-10 chance kept on well to deny the Barry Hills-trained Chancellor by a length.

John Dunlop's Dandoun failed to pick up under Pat Eddery and was beaten just over three lengths in fifth.

Taffrail on right track

Taffrail, perhaps the most progressive young stayer in the country, got the better of veteran course specialist Star Rage at Beverley yesterday. The John Dunlop-trained three-year-old, who was gaining his fourth win in five starts, is now being aimed the Cesarewitch at Newmarket in October.

Dunlop's travelling head lad, Mark Gilchrist, said: "On this sort of ground, he is a very nice horse for the future. But he has got to have good ground."