Racing: Maguire steals bank holiday show: Five-timer takes challenger past Dunwoody in a pursuit of the jump jockeys' championship that is already going into overdrive

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The Independent Online
IN THE most spectacular style, Adrian Maguire yesterday overhauled Richard Dunwoody in the chase for the jump jockeys' championship when he rode the first five winners at Plumpton.

After pushing Dunwoody to the line in last season's title race, Maguire has started the new term with equal vigour and, despite a double at Newton Abbot for the champion, he now leads the table by 21 wins to Dunwoody's 19.

Maguire's five-timer on Sharp Spring, Crews Castle, Safety, Heretical Miss and Wayward Wind produced accumulated odds of only 63-1 as they came at a meeting with a dearth of runners. There were six in the largest field of the day and Maguire's longest winner was a 5-2 shot.

His attempt to rewrite racing's records books and become the first jockey to go through the card in Britain since Alec Russell in 1957 was quickly snuffed out. Drama Critic, his mount in the last, was soon trailing the field and was pulled up by Maguire with a circuit to go.

'It's been a brilliant day,' Maguire said. 'It's the first time I've ridden five, so you could say I've still got something to aim for. I rode two four-timers last season, here and at Ascot.'

Maguire's agent, Dave Roberts, as his job description requires, did not stint in praise. 'I think Adrian performed miracles to win the fifth race on Wayward Wind,' he said. 'He was inspired.'

Peter Niven was the last jump jockey to ride five consecutive winners at a meeting, at Kelso in October, 1992, when the stewards ruled out an attempt to give him a ride on Rawaan, the eventual winner of the final race.

An accolade of another sort has gone to Paul Eddery, whose success on Owington in the July Cup has been rewarded with a share of rides on the top sprinter.

He will partner the Geoff Wragg-trained colt in Saturday's Haydock Park Sprint Cup and will thereafter alternate with Michael Hills, who rode Owington to success at York and Royal Ascot but missed the July Cup due to suspension.

Hills's agent, John Robertson, confirmed: 'It's the decision of Owington's owner, Baron von Ullmann. Both jockeys ride him in work and they will now share the ride. Michael is away at present but he is obviously disappointed.'

Hills has suffered wretched luck in this season's Group One sprints. He also lost the Nunthorpe Stakes at York in the stewards' room after passing the post first on Blue Siren. He was adjudged guilty of irresponsible riding and given a seven-day ban, which expires on the eve of the Haydock race.

At Newcastle, Walter Swinburn's skills in the saddle took the applause when he rode a double in the opening races after flying in from a successful weekend in Chicago.

Swinburn, who won Saturday's pounds 202,000 Beverly D Stakes on Hatoof, finished a creditable fourth 24 hours later on Petit Loup in the Arlington Million. The race went to the 9-5 favourite, Paradise Creek, who overhauled the former Guy Harwood charge Fanmore inside the final furlong. Willie Carson and Muhtarram finished third, while the second British raider, the Clive Brittain- trained Spartan Shareef, was seventh, beaten just over six and a quarter lengths.

(Photograph omitted)