Premio Loco cut for Cambridgeshire
REPORT: KEMPTON, Saturday
PREMIO LOCO had his Totesport Cambridgeshire odds cut after winning the final of the London Mile series but connections immediately warned the Newmarket race is unlikely to be undertaken despite being a dream of his winning owner.
George Baker gave the 2-1 favourite's backers a smooth rideas Premio Loco continued his progression to romp away from Cape Hawk and Formation to set up a likely start to 2009 in Dubai.
Winning trainer Chris Wall explained that the likely underfoot conditions at Newmarket next month for the Cambridgeshire - for which he was cut to 12-1 (from 25) by VCbet and 14-1 (from 25) by William Hill - were turning thoughts to Dubai for Premio Loco, who has won his last three starts on the all-weather.
"Anything could happen with this weather so I wouldn't say definitely not but we need to make a decision now if he is going to Dubai as he will need a break before that," said Wall.
Winning owner Bernard Westley, nattily dressed in an orange shirt and black tie to match his racing colours, said: "I live on the Norfolk Broads now but was brought up in Cambridgeshire near Newmarket and played for the football team so was always getting complimentary tickets to go racing.
"That is why it is my dream to have a winner at the course and the Cambridgeshire would be something else but I don't think he will be going for that as he is a top-of-the-ground horse."
Elnawin was a game winner of the Group 3 Toteswinger Sirenia Stakes but left trainer Richard Hannon with a dilemma of what to do with the talented and progressive youngster.
"I thought about the Flying Childers at Doncaster but I ran Godfrey Street in it a couple of years ago and that left him carrying a penalty against older horses until the end of the following July and he couldn't win."
The strongly-backed 6-4 favourite proved too strong for his rivals with a withering run down the midtrack outside of his field through the last half of the 6f race.
Pat Dobbs dropped his reins inside the final furlong but made light of it in driving out Elnawin to hold off Square Eddie.
Dobbs, who was banned for three days (Sept 20-22) for using his whip in the incorrect place, gave up his remaining rides, still feeling the effects on his ribs of being involved in the four-horse fall at Chester last week.
There was no lack of excitement and drama in the other races with a 15-minute stewards inquiry after Captain Ramius had snipedhis way up the straight to deny the persistent challenge of Ashram in the 7f conditions stakes.
Jamie Spencer, another refugee from flooded Haydock in taking over from Eddie Ahern, bossed the race but could not stop the colt from veering badly left first as he came under pressure before he edged back the other way with Ashram still in his wake.
Winning trainer Mark Wallace said: "Jamie said it was very windy out there and this horse is still a bit green. I think he is going to be a proper horse next year but we might try for some black type this year."
Favourite backers had a rollercoaster ride with Richard Hills and Ethaara in the 7f handicap before the William Haggas-trained filly burst through against the inside rail to pip the dead heating frontrunner Lone Wolfe and strong finisher Woodcote Place.
The stewards were busy, slapping Hills with a five-day ban for careless riding in the first-furlong incident which saw Opus Maximus badly hampered by the winner as they went for the rail.
David Probert had his apprentice title aspirations dealt a blow as he was banned for four days for another incident of careless riding as he angled out Wigram's Turn into the final two furlongs, hampering Divertimenti, who stumbled and nearly fell.
Probert bounced back to make his first ride for trainer Michael Jarvis a winning one, adding another fan to his growing list as the Newmarket trainer reported instructions carried out to the letter as Armure outstayedher rivals in the 1m3f handicap.
There was more drama in the 2m handicap with pacesetting Precision Break battling back to deny Borrowdale, who had gone past looking all over the winner into the final furlong.
PremioLoco, impressive winner of the London Mile and still relatively lightly-raced.