Spectrum raises more suspicion

RACING: Bahri's failure to finish better than third at The Curragh further undermines form lines from the Newmarket Guineas

Black Sunday saw the Guineas devalued yesterday. Victory for Spectrum in the Irish 2,000 Guineas suggested the British version may yet go down as the counterfeit contest of the season.

There were few who doubted the Newmarket Classic was a reliable benchmark when Pennekamp and Celtic Swing, the juvenile champions of France and Britain, fought out such a stirring finish just 16 days ago. The excitable were even moved to produce phrases such as "race of the century".

The cold analysis now, however, concerns the nine horses that finished behind the big two. Six have run subsequently and none have won. Indeed, the best performance has been that of Bahri, third at Newmarket and third again yesterday, when he was dismissed with ease by Spectrum. Nwaamis, who was fifth over the Rowley Mile, beat just two home yesterday.

This result will have knocked a shade of cockiness out of those who have ante-post vouchers on Pennekamp and Celtic Swing in their back pockets. It also means the bookmakers now have to take their feet off the table as a previously moribund market is revived.

Ladbrokes brought Spectrum in to 3-1 second-favourite of the confirmed runners, extending Pennekamp from 4-5 to 6-4. Celtic Swing remains at 7-4 with a run, and there is unlikely to be any juggling with his price until 1 June, the deadline by which Peter Savill, the colt's owner, must decided if he is to supplement for the Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby).

Ladbrokes and Coral clearly believe this is a narrow market. They are already betting to more than 100 per cent with the front three.

The result at The Curragh was no less intriguing for the fact that Spectrum's breeding suggests he will be a more potent beast over longer distances. The colt was a recalcitrant figure at the start yesterday, approaching the stalls as joyously as a child going through the dentist's door. Pre- match nerves also got to Bahri, who tore off a shoe on the way to the start and had to be replated.

John Dunlop's colt took the attention of the blacksmith well, but was far less malleable in the race itself, pulling considerably in the hands of Willie Carson and running up several blind alleys. Spectrum, though, who was protecting an unbeaten record, gave no signal that he was contesting a Group race for the first time in his career, and once John Reid sent him to the front two furlongs out all doubt was removed from the race.

For Peter Chapple-Hyam, the Manton trainer, this was a third Irish Guineas in four years following Rodrigo de Triano and Turtle Island. "This is a special horse," he said in the winners' enclosure. "I have always believed in him and I think we'll have to give the Derby a go now. He goes on good ground and, apart from going into the stalls, he behaved very well and ran a smashing race. This is not the first time I have said he is my best three-year-old.''

Reid was similarly upbeat. "This horse has always shown plenty of foot at home," the jockey said. "They went so slowly early on I had to change my pre-race tactics and go for home earlier than we had originally planned. Spectrum moved up readily to the leaders and did everything right from the moment I said go. We're looking forward to plenty more big races with him.''

For those anxious to hear mitigation, Dunlop offered the thoughts that Bahri had been ill-served by the slow pace and the run of the race. There are no plans for the colt, but John Oxx's Adjareli, who beat him by a short-head for second, is already pencilled in for the St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Newbury's first Group One race, the elevated Lockinge Stakes, went to Soviet Line, who led from start to finish. "I've never seen a horse improve so much over 10 months," Joe Mercer, the racing manager to the gelding's owner, Maktoum Al Maktoum, said.

Elsewhere, the form of other horses appeared to be deteriorating just as quickly.

CURRAGH (Irish 2,000 Guineas): 1. SPECTRUM (J Reid) 100-30; 2. Adjareli 9-1; 3. Bahri 11-8 fav. 9 ran. 1 length, sht-hd. (P Chapple-Hyam, Manton). Tote: pounds 4.20; pounds 1.80 pounds 1.90 pounds 1.30. Reverse Forecast: pounds 15.90. CSF: pounds 29.99.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: SAGE Bookkeeper & PA to Directors

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Executive

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map