Racing: Rakti turns enforcer to muscle out rivals

It is an odd combination, that of Michael Jarvis and Rakti, a sort of nice cop, bad cop of the Turf. Yesterday they blended to produce a confession of brilliance as the Prince of Wales's Stakes found its way to the lodgings of their Kremlin House stables.

It is an odd combination, that of Michael Jarvis and Rakti, a sort of nice cop, bad cop of the Turf. Yesterday they blended to produce a confession of brilliance as the Prince of Wales's Stakes found its way to the lodgings of their Kremlin House stables.

Jarvis is a nice personality, at 65 Newmarket's longest serving trainer and a widely respected figure. Rakti is not, but is forgiven his cussedness because the wild horse takes his home combative tendencies on to the racecourse.

Rakti killed them off with his trademark pulverising burst of speed yesterday and fertile lands lie ahead. It was a clean blow in round one of the bout to discover which is the best older horse in Europe this year. The Eclipse and International Stakes now beckon and victory in both would earn the BHB summer Triple Crown and a £1m bonus.

But, to start at the beginning, Rakti, as usual, looked awesome in the parade ring yesterday, his huge, gleaming chassis giving the appearance that it could house a few Greeks. He ducked as he circled, crunching loudly on his bit. It was his way of showing who was in charge.

Powerscourt was smaller but also powerful and attended by a sombre group of connections. The tumbleweed is blowing through the lanes of Ballydoyle this season and even when the familiar Magnier colours were successful in the Queen Mary Stakes later in the day it was for the less celebrated Irish yard overseen by David Wachman.

Godolphin's Sulamani is a different beast this season and no longer possesses the physique of a dry-season antelope. The five-year-old now has a greater musculature, though he will never be gargantuan. These were the big three.

Rakti had to be forced into the stalls, but needed no help to force himself out. He emerged like a bullet in behind the pacemaking Lunar Sovereign and pulled Philip Robinson's arms violently from the outset. The jockey may now be able to tie his shoelaces without bending over.

Such early release of energy usually meets ultimate gasping failure, but Robinson was not massively concerned. "He's a keen-running horse, but that's naturally him, and if he was off the bit and settled then there would be something wrong," the jockey reported. "No matter how much rein you give him he sits there on the bridle. You could ride him on the buckle end with four foot of rein and he would take every inch of it."

The decisive move arrived just over a furlong out and it was effectively checkmate. Rakti employed his explosive rush and from then on the rest were playing futile catch-up.

Jarvis, who later captured the Sandringham Stakes with Celtic Heroine, was doubly relieved following Ratki's recalcitrance in the race and his indolence on the gallops. "He hasn't been working with his usual freedom, but I put that down to the fact that he's a year older and knows what's going on," the trainer said. "He's switched off a little at home and is more relaxed, but once he gets in those stalls he knows what the game's about and wants to get out."

"He's not straightforward this horse. He's a bully and he'll push you out of the box if he doesn't like the look of you."

"He's a powerful horse. As he's got older he's got stronger and he's got this wonderful burst of speed on fast ground.

"I'm lucky to have had some good horses [including the 1989 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe winner Carroll House], but he's certainly the best 10-furlong horse I've ever had and I think he could win a good mile race."

Sulamani was fourth and Powerscourt second, which in the context of the fortunes of Aidan O'Brien's string this season was a screaming success. Sulamani's team had earlier won the Jersey Stakes with the impressive Kheleyf and were so taken with the display that the Sussex Stakes was quickly nominated as a future port of call. Kheleyf already appears to have a sensible chance in the Goodwood Group One. Unless Rakti drops back to a mile that is.

RICHARD EDMONDSON

Nap: Thyolo

(Royal Ascot 5.30)

NB: Leicester Square

(Royal Ascot 4.55)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
One of the 'princesses' in the video
videoYouTube reinstates sweary video after takedown for 'violating terms'
Life and Style
Could you tell the difference between this and an organic alternative?
food + drink

Culinary experts in The Netherlands thought it was 'fresh' and 'tasty'

Life and Style
Six of the 76 Goats' cheese samples contained a significant amount of sheep's cheese
food + drink
News
Russell Brand arriving for the book launch in East London
peopleRussell Brand cancels his book launch debate due to concerns about the make-up of the panel
Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to US
Life and Style
tech

Of all the computers Apple has ever made there’s only one that Steve Jobs had to sell his car to finance

News
New look: Zellweger at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday

Actress sees off speculation about her face in an amazing way

Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidates on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
News
Call me Superman: one of many unusual names chosen by Chinese students
newsChinese state TV offers advice for citizens picking a Western moniker
Arts and Entertainment
film

Marvel has released first teaser trailer week early after it leaked online

Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
News
Let’s pretend: KidZania in Tokyo
educationKidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SEN Teaching Assistant

£70 - £85 per day: Randstad Education Group: SEN Teaching Assistants needed in...

Year 4 Teacher required for 2 terms

£21500 - £35000 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Randstad Education ar...

Accounts Assistant - Sales Ledger, Sage Line 50 - St Albans

£20000 - £22000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A highly successful and w...

EBD Teacher

£120 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Are you a quailed Teacher ...

Day In a Page

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?