May 25 2013 Latest news:
By Simon Jackson, London24’s horse racing correspondent
Saturday, January 5, 2013
Horse Talk: Top horse-racing tips and the latest news
Sir Alex Ferguson attended the racing at Lingfield Park today where his well-fancied runner I’m Fraam Govan was one of six losing favourites on a torrid day for punters.
The Sir Alex owned five-year-old was sent off the 4-9 favourite for the first division of the all-weather bumper following an impressive victory at his sole previous start at Worcester in May, but could only finish fifth to the Paul Webber trained debutant Koolala.
“We have got three horses for Sir Alex and he has supported us from the beginning,”trainer George Baker said ahead of the two mile contest that followed on from four chases on the six-race card staged on the turf and all-weather.
“He is a lovely horse though I really would have preferred to run him on the turf,”continued Baker who later admitted to his disappointment at the result, while revealing that jockey Andrew Tinkler had reported his mount was travelling well until being forced to check in the latter stages.
Meanwhile winning trainer Paul Webber has high hopes for Koolala who prevailed by a neck at 25-1. “She is a lovely filly at home and has got great stamina, guts and toughness,”Webber said. “I couldn’t be more thrilled with her and we have a fillies’ race in mind for her at Sandown which is a course that will suit her.”
Koolala’s victory continued a miserable day for favourite backers. The only respite in the earlier races was the victory of the Philip Hobbs trained 9-4 second favourite Ballygarvey who led all the way to win in the first of the two mile, four furlong, Class 4s.
“We were quite confident. Philip said he should go close,” said Fenella Tillier, one of the eight members of the Dark Horse Syndicate that own the lightly-raced seven-year-old who was recording his second win in a career spanning just nine starts.
The Mick Channon trained Sgt Reckless was another who justified his connections’pre-race confidence when he landed Division Two of the bumper and will now be aimed at the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham festival.
Channon last season took over the training of Sgt Reckless and the bulk of Henrietta Knight’s team upon the retirement of the three time Cheltenham Gold Cup winning trainer.
Knight still plays a pivotal role in the early preparation of her former string. She brightened the winner’s enclosure by her presence alongside her husband, the former champion jump jockey Terry Biddlecombe.