Hannon's Midas touch turns Lotto gold into glory with Libranno

This bloke Hannon seems to be getting the hang of things. At this rate, in fact, you wouldn't bet against him adding to the trainers' championship he won in 1992. At 65, Richard Hannon, in partnership with his son, assistant and namesake, is extending his pomp to the point that their Wiltshire stable, long a prolific source of juvenile winners, now houses the favourites for both the 2,000 and 1,000 Guineas, in Strong Suit and Memory respectively.

Yesterday it produced the winners of both juvenile races on the second day of the July Festival, though in the case of Libranno in the TNT July Stakes even Hannon could not rival the Midas touch of the colt's owner and breeder, Oliver McDowell.

A few years ago McDowell, a north London locksmith, won over £7m on the Lotto. He says he has since given most of it away, but he kept enough to pursue the dreams that first brought him here as a boy. McDowell bought a filly named Annabelle Ja, and when she had to be retired prematurely he had her covered by a young stallion, Librettist. Libranno was the result, and a few weeks ago he won his first start over on the Rowley Mile, at 25-1.

Though he took on just four rivals for this Group Two prize, once again nobody wanted to know, and he was sent off 10-1. Instead it was Elzaam who started at odds-on, having only been collared on the line by Strong Suit himself in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot, but he was soon off the bridle – perhaps not over a hard race there – as Ryan Moore set a strong pace on Libranno. One by one his pursuers began to flounder, with only Neebras rallying from a slow start to get within three-quarters of a length at the post, the pair well clear of Elzaam.

"I've got 15 grandchildren, but this horse is like another one to me," McDowell said. "And it would be just the same if he were just a selling plater. I served my apprenticeship in Newmarket, 67 years ago, with Joe Lawson at Carlburg Stables. It was very tough, but those were wonderful days. I didn't buy the dam, I stole her. Willie Browne paid 70,000 [guineas] for her as a yearling, and I got her for 18,000 at the breeze-ups."

Everything this family touches clearly turns to gold, as he is "a distant cousin" of Graeme McDowell, who won the US Open last month.But Libranno's trainer clearly had a role, too. "I sent this horse half-cocked for his debut and he won," Hannon said. "And if they win for me first time, they usually have a bit more in the tank. He's a bit free at home and I said to Ryan: 'If he leaves the gate good, don't try and organise him – let him roll.' You've got to give him some respect now."

At the same time, however, he admitted that Libranno was not in the same class as Strong Suit. "There's no doubt he's my best two-year-old," he said. "He's a very, very good horse. I think."

Hannon will be raising Casual Glimpse in class after he came from off the pace in the EBF Conditions Stakes, a notable effort on a card dominated by front-runners. Whether a similar bias will today favour Starspangledbanner in the meeting's climax, the Darley July Cup, remains to be seen. He certainly enjoyed the best of the draw when winning the Golden Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot, blazing clear on the stands rail, and Society Rock (3.10) excelled in cutting through the rest of the pack after a messy start out in the middle. He looks overpriced for the rematch, still lightly raced and representing, in James Fanshawe, a trainer in far better form than his depressing statistics imply.

Another local yard to be showing signs of hitting form is that of John Ryan, who won the 3Red Superlative Stakes last year with Silver Grecian and could have a better chance of following up than the likely odds about Ocean Bay (2.0) would suggest. This colt showed promise in a good race over the bare five furlongs in the spring, and should prove a different proposition over this trip.

The same sponsors, together with the course management, apparently expect people no longer to refer to the day's big handicap as the Bunbury Cup. It is unmistakably the same race, however, in terms of competition, with Signor Peltro heading the many dangers. Group One-placed as a juvenile, Gallagher (2.35) shaped nicely on his return from a break at Ascot and is restored to his best trip today.

Turf account

Chris McGrath's Nap

Society Rock (3.10 Newmarket) Close at 50-1 last time and warrants perseverance, with odds still too generous.

Next best

Keenes Day (3.0 Ascot) Down in the weights and back to form at Kempton last time.

One to watch

Straversjoy (R Hollinshead) Is finding her feet, no chance against a hotpot at Haydock but keeping on for fourth.

Where the money's going

Palace Moon is 11-2 from 7-1 with William Hill for the John Smith's Gold Cup at York tomorrow.

Arts & Entertainment
Shaun Evans as Endeavour interviews a prisoner as he tries to get to the bottom of a police cover up
tvReview: Second series comes to close with startling tale of police corruption and child abuse
Arts & Entertainment
A stranger calls: Martin Freeman in ‘Fargo’
Review: New 10-part series brims with characters and stories

Arts & Entertainment
Schwarzenegger winning Mr. Universe 1969
arts + entsCan you guess the celebrity from these British Pathe News clips?
Sport
Raheem Sterling and Luis Suarez celebrate during Liverpool's game with Norwich
football Another hurdle is out of the way for Brendan Rodgers' side
VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Arts & Entertainment
The star of the sitcom ‘Miranda’ is hugely popular with mainstream audiences
TVMiranda Hart lined up for ‘Generation Game’ revival
News
Portrait of Queen Elizabeth-II by David Bailey which has been released to mark her 88th birthday
peoplePortrait released to mark monarch's 88th birthday
Life & Style
The writer, Gerda Saunders, with her mother, who also suffered with dementia before her death
healthGerda Saunders on the most formidable effect of her dementia
Sport
Manchester United manager David Moyes looks on during his side's defeat to Everton
footballBaines and Mirallas score against United as Everton keep alive hopes of a top-four finish
Sport
Tour de France 2014Sir Rodney Walker on organising the UK stages of this year’s race
Arts & Entertainment
Jessica Brown Findlay as Mary Yellan in ‘Jamaica Inn’
TVJessica Brown Findlay on playing the spirited heroine of Jamaica Inn
News
YouTube clocks up more than a billion users a month
mediaEuropean rival Dailymotion certainly thinks so
Arts & Entertainment
The original design with Charles' face clearly visible, which is on display around the capital
arts + ents The ad shows Prince Charles attired for his coronation in a crown and fur mantle with his mouth covered by a criss-cross of white duct tape
Arts & Entertainment
‘Self-Portrait Worshipping Christ’ (c943-57) by St Dunstan
books How British artists perfected the art of the self-portrait
Sport
Luis Suarez celebrates after scoring in Liverpool's 3-2 win over Norwich
Football Vine shows Suarez writhing in pain before launching counter attack
News
People White House officials refuse to make comment on 275,000 signatures that want Justin Bieber's US visa revoked
News
Sir Cliff Richard is to release his hundredth album at age 72
PEOPLE
Sport
Lukas Podolski celebrates one of his two goals in Arsenal's win over Hull
football
Arts & Entertainment
Quentin Tarantino, director
film
News
The speeding train nearly hit this US politican during a lecture on rail safety
news As the saying goes, you have to practice what you preach
Sport
Mercedes Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain (front) drives ahead of Red Bull Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo of Australia during the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at the Shanghai International circuit
sport
Arts & Entertainment
Billie Jean King, who won the women’s Wimbledon title in 1967, when the first colour pictures were broadcast
tv
News
Snow has no plans to step back or reduce his workload
mediaIt's 25 years since Jon Snow first presented Channel 4 News, and his drive shows no sign of diminishing
Life & Style
food + drinkWhat’s not to like?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Geography Teacher

£130 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Ilford: Secondary Geography Teacher Lo...

Do you want to work in Education?

£55 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Are you a dynamic and energeti...

SEN Teaching Assistant

Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: SEN TAs, LSAs and Support Workers needed...

Private Client Senior Manager - Sheffield

£50000 - £60000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: The Sheffield office of this...

Day In a Page

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players
Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

The all-rounder has been hailed as future star after Ashes debut but incident in Caribbean added to doubts about discipline. Jon Culley meets a man looking to control his emotions
Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

The most prize money ever at an All-Weather race day is up for grabs at Lingfield on Friday, and the record-breaking trainer tells Jon Freeman how times have changed
Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

Mad Men returns for a final fling

The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit