Racing: Injury ends career of Oaks winner Eswarah

The Michael Jarvis-trained Eswarah was last seen in action when fourth to Punctilious in the Yorkshire Oaks. A subsequent x-ray examination has revealed a small chip in a knee. As a daughter of Unfuwain out of another Oaks winner, the 1986 victress Midway Lady, the logical step was to dispatch her to the broodmare ranks of her owner, Hamdan Al Maktoum.

Jarvis believes the filly could have achieved even more in her career had she raced on her preferred ground. "She was a filly who was always needing soft ground," he said. "I felt she never really fulfilled the best we could have had from a lovely filly. After her first run at Newbury she was really racing on ground that was against her."

There was further disappointment for Sheikh Hamdan at York yesterday when Maraahel, a close third in the International Stakes 15 days ago, was unable to justify even-money favouritism in the Strensall Stakes, finishing third to Aidan O'Brien's Mullins Bay. Maraahel's jockey, Richard Hills, said: "He travelled well into the straight but didn't pick up. Maybe he had a harder race than we thought last time."

Mullins Bay was the middle leg of a Kieren Fallon treble and the jockey said: "He's a lovely horse and Aidan loved him last year, so much so that he pressed for him to stay in training this year and it's worked out well. He's won a lot of money now."

The six-times champion jockey had been seen to great effect when getting Cross The Line home in the opening handicap for Alan Jarvis, who said: "I've been using the top jockeys for 35 years but Kieren is a genius."

The three-timer was completed on Charlie Cool, impressive winner of the maiden. The William Haggas-trained colt quickened well to earn a 33-1 quote from Victor Chandler for the 2,000 Guineas and Derby.

"He feels like a real nice horse; a proper horse," Fallon said. "He quickened twice and you don't usually see that. It's quite exciting when you get one that can do that."

With Jarvis's praise still ringing Gift Horse came in for strong support for Saturday's Sprint Cup at Haydock after it was confirmed that Fallon will ride.

The David Nicholls-trained Gift Horse was last seen winning the Stewards' Cup and Fallon said: "He was always better than a handicapper and he proved that at Goodwood but Proclamation [the favourite] has a lot of ability."

"He is coming back in trip and will need luck in running so he is not home and hosed by any means. My fellow deserves to be there. Dandy improves his horses and has done it with some good sprinters over the years I think he can do it with this one."

Brian Ellison's progressive three-year-old Ashkal Way has been installed as favourite for the Cambridgeshire at Newmarket on 1 October. The son of Ashkalani landed a massive gamble at Beverley recently and is the 9-1 market leader with Ladbrokes from 129 entries for the £130,000 contest over nine furlongs. Heading the weights on 9st 10lb is Eccentric, who landed the Winter Hill Stakes at Windsor last Saturday.

SPRINT CUP (Haydock, Saturday): William Hill: 6-4 Proclamation, 4-1 Goodricke, 5-1 Gift Horse , 10-1 Etlaala, La Cucaracha, 12-1 Iffraaj, Somnus, 16-1 Galeota, 20-1 Lucky Spin, 33-1 others. Ladbrokes: 6-4 Proclamation, 9-2 Goodricke, 5-1 Gift Horse, 10-1 Etlaala, La Cucaracha, 12-1 Somnus, 14-1 Iffraaj, Galeota, 16-1 Lucky Spin, 25-1 others. Coral: 7-4 Proclamation, 5-1 Goodricke, 6-1 Gift Horse, 9-1 Somnus, La Cucaracha, 10-1 Etlaala, 12-1 Galeota, 14-1 others.

CAMBRIDGESHIRE (Newmarket, 1 Oct) Ladbrokes: 9-1 Ashkal Way, 12-1 Pedrillo, Stronghold, 14-1 Cesare, Evaluator, Musicanna, Sound Breeze, 16-1 All That And More, Blue Monday, Momtic, 20-1 others.

Richard Edmondson

Nap: Shortest Day

(Salisbury 3.20)

NB: Nidhaal

(Salisbury 4.20)

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