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Sunday, 20 January, 2019

The best and worst from this week's racing

Aljazzi goes one place better than at Royal Ascot in the Atalanta Stakes at Sandown on Saturday
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Performance of the week (1)

If we needed some convincing her second in the Duke of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot was legitimate, Aljazzi showed her class in no uncertain style in the Atalanta Stakes.

A good field was taken apart by the Marco Botti-trained filly and it was clear for all to see that she can make her mark back up in grade next time.

The Group 1 Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket is reportedly her aim, and she will be an interesting contender in that race this autumn.

Performance of the week (2)

Instead of looking for something disappointing this week, let us instead find space for the wonderful Take Cover.

Now a ten-year-old, the peculiarly bred sprinter still shows such speed and enthusiasm that you cannot help but find yourself cheering him on, whether you intended to or not.

The apple of trainer David Griffiths’s eye, Take Cover will surely continue to do all connected with him proud for the remainder of the season.

Quote of the week

"I didn't realise until seeing on this trip how hard our stable staff and all the stable staff work. As much as it means to us, it means so much to them and it's a big team effort – they've looked after the horse so well."

Charlie Austin, Premier League footballer and co-founder of Excel Racing, praises the work of stable staff after his Another Batt wins in Turkey.

Picture of the week

Why rush things on transfer deadline day? West Ham footballer Diafra Sakho went to Chelmsford to watch his agent's horse run –albeit he never left the car. At least Siege Of Boston won . . .

This week's international superstars

It was one of the quieter weekends in Europe, but elsewhere across the globe there were some seriously notable performances.

Winx, the amazing mare, won her 19th race on the spin, Gun Runner tore apart the field in the Woodward Stakes at Saratoga and Joao ‘Magic Man’ Moreira fired in a five-timer (from ten races) at the first Sha Tin meeting of the new season in Hong Kong. Well done all.

Most anticipated meeting of the week

Are we there yet? That is the question we will all be asking as we count down the days to Irish Champions Weekend at Leopardstown and the Curragh.

Topping the bill it has to be Big Orange v Order Of St George. Will they be able to serve up another classic in the Irish St Leger (pun intended) having produced such a memorable contest in the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot? Here’s hoping.

Top effort of the week

Credit to Chelmsford City racecourse, where a cracking fixture was held on Saturday.

With £200,000 in prize-money up for grabs (just behind Sandown’s £202,000), the track hosted some excellent racing, including a fantastic £80,000 7f handicap, before Boyzone entertained the big crowd afterwards.

Good job.

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As much as it means to us, it means so much to them
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