Racing: More magic from Young Mick

Great Britain and Ireland team easily dominate the World in Ascot riders' cup

As it always should be, it was a horse who was the star of the show here yesterday. A fleet of international jockeys were strutting their stuff in the Great Britain & Ireland v the Rest of the World team competition that is the Shergar Cup but the remarkable Young Mick put them in their place. With Gerald Mosse in the saddle, he provided the ROW side with their sole success in six races but such was the ease of his victory that the identity of the rider was almost immaterial. Charlotte Church, who provided the post-racing musical entertainment, could probably have won on him.

All right, Young Mick is just a handicapper, not a top-level performer. But pound for pound he is the most improved horse in training and his progress has been a testament to his small-time Newmarket trainer George Margarson. The four-year-old could not win a bad maiden at Wolverhampton in January off a mark of 52; yesterday he romped in off 96 in the Challenge to record his third 12-furlong success here, including one at the Royal meeting, and his ninth of the year.

His next target is the Ebor Handicap at York in 10 days' time, for which he is now among the market leaders at around 10-1. "Today was nothing more than a paid exercise gallop for him," said a delighted Margarson. "He'll be out again tomorrow for a 10-furlong canter; if he wasn't he'd be climbing out of his box.

"That seems the key to him, he thrives on hard work. Back in January he wasn't doing on the track what he was showing at us home and I finally lost my temper. I ran him four times in nine days, he won three, the penny finally dropped and he hasn't looked back." Young Mick, owned and bred by Mike Kentish, will be stepping up two more furlongs on the Knavesmire. "Whether he gets the trip, we won't know until then," added Margarson, "but my guess is he will. Everyone laughed when I put him in the Melbourne Cup, but I think they'll have to take him seriously now."

For all its place on a novelty day, the Juvenile has produced some smart performers in its short history, having two subsequent Group 1 winners, Tout Seul and Kinnaird, in the past three runnings. Yesterday's easy four-length winner, Eddie Jock, is on his way up the ladder and may turn out again in the Acomb Stakes at York.

Racing, with so many individual axes grinding in each human-equine partnership, cannot really lend itself to a team event; yesterday was hardly a rider cup, never mind a Ryder Cup. The result, about as inconsequential as that of the Charity Shield, was, for the record, a 158-95 point victory for the home side, including doubles from Seb Sanders and Ryan Moore.

But on the credit side, the day provides something different in the lull between the Goodwood and York festivals and yesterday's crowd of over 21,000 compares very favourably with that on an ordinary Saturday here.

At Newmarket, English Ballet produced at stylish display to take the Sweet Solera Stakes, the Group 3 contest that often pinpoints top-flight young performers, notably Soviet Song, who beat Summitville four years ago. The Barry Hill-trained filly was slowly away but swiftly found her balance and stride ground and with a quarter-mile to go quickened on demand on the rain-softened ground to go clear of Princess Taise and win, her ears pricked, by a length.

The most important of the weekend's two-year-old events is today's Group 1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh. Last year George Washington announced his arrival in the top echelon of his generation with a devastating eight-length rout of his rivals, becoming the seventh winner of the race to emerge from Ballydoyle in eight years.

The latest Aidan O'Brien wunderkind is Holy Roman Emperor, one of the last of the Danehills. The colt was supplemented to the six-furlong dash at a cost of E30,000 (£20,000), so it may be reasonable to assume his connections are confident of his atoning for a disappointing Coventry Stakes, when he was only 15th of 21 runners. The Royal Ascot winner, Bryan Smart-trained Hellvellyn, reopposes.

This afternoon's other top action is in France, where Peeress (Sir Michael Stoute) and Librettist (Saeed Bin Suroor) challenge from Britain for the Prix Jacques Le Marois . The O'Brien raider is Ad Valorem, with the home defence led by Stormy River.

BETS OF THE DAY

Best shortshot
The experience of well-bred Hadahoo (Leicester 2.20) in a similar race at Newmarket two weeks ago should tell.

Best longshot
Has been off for four months, but Cursum Perficio (Leicester 3.20) is unexposed and well-drawn for one who races prominently.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
fashionHealth concerns and 'pornified' perceptions have made women more conscious at the beach
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Sport
Ojo Onaolapo celebrates winning the bronze medal
commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
musicLed Zeppelin to release alternative Stairway To Heaven after 43 years
Arts and Entertainment
High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
filmHe was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
Sport
Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
footballA colourful discussion on tactics, the merits of the English footballer and rebuilding Manchester United
Life and Style
Sainsbury's could roll the lorries out across its whole fleet if they are successful
tech
Travel
The shipping news: a typical Snoozebox construction
travelSpending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Arts and Entertainment
'Old Fashioned' will be a different kind of love story to '50 Shades'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' is returning to the Tate more than 15 years after it first caused shockwaves at the gallery
artTracey Emin's bed returns to the Tate after record sale
Arts and Entertainment
Smart mover: Peter Bazalgette
filmHow live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences
Environment
Neil Young performing at Hyde Park, London, earlier this month
environment
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Coordinator

Competitive: The Green Recruitment Company: The Organisation: The Green Recrui...

Project Manager (HR)- Bristol - Upto £400 p/day

£350 - £400 per annum + competitive: Orgtel: Project Manager (specializing in ...

Embedded Linux Engineer

£40000 - £50000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Embedded Sof...

Senior Hardware Design Engineer - Broadcast

£50000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: Working for a m...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz