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Aayamza Express’s fantastic victory on Friday in the Champion Stakes seems to have reignited our season and what a wonderful night it was at Romford, the official opening of the new Grandstand coupled with a great card that featured the heats of the TV Trophy saw the stadium buzzing.
The Champion Stakes final had surprises all the way through but Aayamza Express was prominent in the ante post betting after last months Maiden Final victory over the 575m and fastest in the semi final she used her trap 1 draw to full advantage as she paced up on the inside and barged her way to the front on the opening turns. Seamus Cahill’s Ten More and produced a great effort to chase Aayamza Express all the way home keeping her more than honest but eventually our flying bitch came home just over 2 lengths to the good in a brilliant 34.90. Our other finalist veteran Saleen Ash never really broke as good as he could and was crowded out at the first bend eventually finishing 4th but a sterling effort nonetheless.
The Ayamza Boys syndicate were jubilant led by Nigel Smith and Mitch & Perry Brennan and a huge party of syndicate members and friends filled the podium and now after over 12 years as owners waiting to land a big Category 1 title they have now hit the target with two inside four months after Aayamza Breeze’s superb Regency victory at Hove. Aayamza Express looked a massive prospect for us as a pup for the syndicate when sourced and trained by our good friend Karol Ramsbottom in Ireland and reached the Puppy Oaks final at Shelbourne before season intervened and then on her return she picked up a severe tendon injury which at one point put her career in jeopardy. Nursed back to health by Karol she was sent over to us earlier in the year but another season delayed her qualifying trials and obviously when we did get a chance to start with her she had lost all condition and fitness. When we eventually got her started she was certainly not coming off too sound and I must pay an enormous debt of gratitude to our physio Ron Mills who worked his magic on her and at last as she trialled and raced more she was coming off better and better. Her class has now come to light and though Express is 3 years old she has no miles on the clock and she may well kick on to more silverware for the syndicate. Her next target is Doncaster for the Yorkshire St Leger starting early next month and I see no reason why she wouldn’t get the 661m trip.
The TV Trophy over 925m started on Friday and three cracking heats have produced arguably one of the strongest TV Trophy finals in memory. Graham Holland’s Irish raider Riverside Honey clocked a sensational track record in the first heat beating our youngster Bumblebee Bullet by 7 lengths in a flying 58.57. Bumblebee will improve again, I’m sure, so don’t write her off just yet. Burgess Honey took the second semi final beating Causeway Sergei in 59.24 and to give the Ayamza Boys syndicate a real thrill Aayamza Breeze came from way off the pace to lead at the eighth bend and then hold off Savana Winner by 1/2 length to score in 58.98, it was a magnificent effort after an indifferent run the week before and now our super veteran is eyeing up another big race title. It’s going to be a thriller and if the atmosphere is anything like last Friday then you would be mad not to be there!
The victory and a good couple of weeks has seen the huge margin Patrick Janssens held in the Trainer of the Year standings be reduced from 240 points to around half that total and a victory this Friday would see us right back in contention. The East Anglian Derby would be the next one and both ourselves and Patrick have one runner each left in the competition. For us Antigua Romeo didn’t quite break as well as he could in the second round last night but qualified comfortably in third place, Patrick’s prolific Seaglass Tiger was also second and the pair face each other in the second semi final on Saturday night.
We will only have limited runners this weekend as I’m off on Thursday for our annual Calco golf trip which both myself and our kennelhand Kevin Ulla look forward to each year but we will have runners at Monmore on Saturday for their festival races and the exciting Antigua Rum goes back over track and trip but obviously not a Maiden this week and Antigua Fire in the 684m while we introduce an exciting youngster in Antigua Breeze. Bred by John Mariot our recent acquisition has impressed in trials and is only a March 18 whelp.
Antigua Romeo won his heat of the East Anglian Derby for us last Monday in a good 28.06 and our next action was a memorable night at Romford on Friday where Aayamza Express took the Champion Stakes final and Aayamza Breeze won her heat of the TV Trophy. Saleen Again ran very well when second in the Maiden Stayers final.
At Henlow on Sunday we were out of luck in a few opens with both Alien Sea and Brigadier Bullet second in their respective races.
Sprinters Adageo Joma and Corrig Grace were both second last Monday and on Tuesday Roswell Rainbow and Tiffield Blueboy were both narrowly second with Gully Foyle
our only winner taking an A7 in 28.31.
On Friday youngsters Bobs Duke, Playbook and Coasthopper Vic all cane second with Energize Bobadoo winning an A8 in 28.63. On Sunday Passing Stranger was beaten just 1/2 length in a good A5.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - AAYAMZA EXPRESS
GRADED - GULLY FOYLE
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
This Friday the main action is back at Romford with the final of the TV Trophy and both Bumblebee Bullet and Aayamza Breeze bid for glory.
The East Anglian Derby semi finals see two cracking races at Yarmouth on Saturday and Antigua Romeo has a tough one to try and qualify for next Thursday's final.
We should have a few in the opens at Henlow on Sunday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
A cracking week for both the kennel and our supporters as Aayamza Express landed the Coral Champion Stakes recommended at 12/1 and both our TV Trophy selections made the the final this coming Friday, either one winning will be sweet and we will stick with those selections this week.
ADVISED LAST WEEK
AAYAMZA EXPRESS - 2 pts ew ante post 12/1 - Coral Champion Stakes - Romford - WON 12/1
BUMBLEBEE BULLET - 2 pts ew ante post 16/1 - TV Trophy - Romford- final Friday
AAYAMZA BREEZE - 2.5 pts ew ante post 7/2 - TV Trophy - Romford - final Friday