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Ulster's Bob to strike gold

By Martin Kelly

Ulster-bred Bobs Worth will lead the charge for Gold Cup success on a two-day Sandown fixture that opened in spectacular fashion with a Frankie Dettori 617-1 four-timer.

Dettori was on target on board Mutarakez, Western Hymn, Brandybend and Jack Hobbs.

Sandown switches from the flat to jumps today, the final meeting of the season also marking the retirement of Ulster legend Tony McCoy, who has two rides but no mount in the bet365 Gold Cup.

But Bobs Worth - Cheltenham Gold Cup winner in 2013 - offers every chance of Ulster success in the feature.

Dettori stole the show - spearheaded by the scintillating performance of Jack Hobbs.

It was very much a case of saving the best until last for the popular Italian jockey, with the John Gosden-trained three-year old (10-11 favourite) routing his rivals in the concluding bet365 Handicap.

Despite entering the mile-and-a-quarter race on the back of a maiden win on his sole start at Wolverhampton in December, the son of Halling, bred by Derby-winning jockey Willie Carson, looked every inch a Group-race winner in the making when destroying his rivals by 12 lengths.

Following the victory, which also completed a treble on the day for Gosden, Ladbrokes cut Jack Hobbs to 10-1 for the Investec Derby at Epsom in June.

Gosden said: "I had him in the race I won at Epsom with Christophermarlowe on Wednesday but he had a handicap mark so I had to make use of it.

"He is still very inexperienced but he had been doing everything right at home.

"He is a lovely, progressive horse who is well balanced.

"We have put him in the Dante and that could be an option," he added.

"Frankie (Dettori) seems fairly confident he will get further as he's got a great mind and is very relaxed."

The win marked the second time on the card the trainer and jockey had combined to good effect after Western Hymn (7-2) had earlier mastered his rivals in the bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes.

Mutarakez (7-1) started the season off in fine fashion when kickstarting Dettori's halcyon day with victory in the bet365 Esher Cup.

Compatriot Marco Botti provided Dettori with his third winner on the card after Brandybend (8-1) went one better than on her debut at Chelmsford City in the Nordoff Robbins Willie Robertson Memorial Maiden Fillies' Stakes.

Waady put in the performance of a sprinter going places when gaining an easy victory in the Handicap.

The 9-4 favourite formed the middle part of Gosden's treble when following up his comeback win at Nottingham with the minimum of fuss.

Belfast Telegraph


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