Mill Reef Stakes: Sakheer takes on Newbury Group Two to continue dream week for Classic winners Roger Varian and David Egan | Race News


Classic-winning duo Roger Varian and David Egan continued their memorable week by dominating the chart at Newbury, including winning the Group Two Mill Reef Stakes.

Varian’s exciting Sakheer upheld the promise of his clear success at Haydock with a bloodless victory in the feature.

Beaten only by inexperience on his debut, he built on that first Merseyside appearance last month on just his third start at the Berkshire venue.

Still well positioned to follow early leader Shouldvebeenaring, the result was elementary once David Egan showed Zoffany’s son the light of day and pressed the button to go home.

The 4/5 favorite burned clear to deliver an emphatic verdict of three-and-a-half lengths to the line, the win bringing a quadruple stopwatch on the day for Egan. For Varian, it was his sixth winner of an outstanding afternoon across the UK.

Just six days after the trainer and jockey combination clinched the St Leger for Sakheer owners KHK Racing Ltd, they could have another Classic contender on their hands, with Coral dropping from 10/1 to 33/1 for next year’s 2000 Guineas.

Varian said: “His work has always been very good, we thought he would win the first time around but he ran into a smart filly (Magical Sunset) at Windsor.

“He then won well at Haydock and he looks good. How good, I don’t know, but he may be the best of my two-year-olds. He’s got size and wingspan, he is very exciting and I think he’s going to be seven furlongs or a mile away.”

He added: “You can never really expect things to go as well for us as they do today, but it all clicks into place. He’s in Middle Park, but that’s next week, very soon. We’ll have to see.”

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David Egan and Roger Varian lift the Cazoo St Leger Trophy in Doncaster

Mitbaahy cut for champions sprint after Group Three triumph

Mitbaahy found the common thread with a victorious victory in Group Three Dubai international airport world trophy stakes.

Progressive at the start of the season when he won the Scurry Stakes from Hamilton and Sandown, he was somewhat unfortunate not to score a hat-trick when he beat a neck in the Coral Charge at Esher’s site.

Nothing went well for the Roger Varian-trained son of Profitable at Goodwood when he was judged in group two King George Stakes on his last start, but his handler was keen to draw a line through that outing before this five-stadia event and was right as the three-year-old returned to his best on the Berkshire track.

Still smooth in the hands of Egan behind the blistering pace of Look Out Louis, 9/2 luck continued strong to hunt down Irish raider Teresa Mendoza in the closing stages.

The friendly colt was shortened from 50/1 to 33/1 with Paddy Power and Betfair for the British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot on October 15.

David Egan and Mitbaahy in winning action
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David Egan and Mitbaahy in winning action

Derby entry Exoplanet out of this world

Varian’s fine form continued when Exoplanet made a winning debut in the hands of Egan.

The duo combined to win the St Leger less than a week ago and Egan once again did it all aboard Sea The Stars’ 260,000 guineas sons.

Sent the well-backed 5/2 favorite for the Racing TV EBF Novice Challengeshis stamina reserves came to the fore in the final stages as he continued strongly and had too much for runner-up Bussento.

Victory was far more comfortable than the winning margin would suggest and there is likely more to come from this smart colt owned by Sheikh Mohammed Obai who holds an entry into next year’s Derby.

David Egan after the win over Mitbaahy
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Egan rode the first four map winners in Newbury

Stay Alert Book Ascot Champions Day Ticket

by Hughie Morrison stay alert received a cool spin from Egan to land group three Dubai Duty Free Legacy Cup Stakes at Newbury.

Retained in the early stages of the 11 furlong contest, the Fastnet Rock daughter was still traveling best when the race developed and would have been classed as an unlucky loser had the gaps not materialized.

However, Egan charted a successful course in the closing stages and used the filly’s toe turn to expert effect to seal what was a somewhat cozy success.

Well supported at 5/1 before the start, she was shortened to 14/1 from 20/1 by Paddy Power and Betfair for the British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes at Ascot next month, while Coral went further and offered 8/1 odds for the three-year-old to hit on Qipco’s British Champions Day.

Morrison confirmed Ascot was the target, saying: “She made three quick runs, and it was important after the Lancashire Oaks that we sorted her out. That’s why she was dropped today. She was completely relaxed and caught up indoors.

“I always thought she was going to pull it off, and she actually shows decent toe turn.

“I fancy taking her to Ascot on Champions Day for Group 1 fillies over a mile and a half. And hopefully Martyn and Ben (Arbib) try to keep her in training next year .”

Saeed bin Suroor Army on the march (22/1) led a Godolphin 1-2-3 at home in the Dubai Duty Free Handicapwith the pair formed by Charlie Appleby of the Ottoman Fleet (second) and 5/2 favorite Warren Point filling the leaderboards.




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