Triumphant strikes gold seven days late
DONJUAN Triumphant lunged late to claim a last-gasp success in the 32Red Gold Cup at Haydock.
The £90,000 contest was a late addition to the programme on Merseyside, replacing the prestigious Ayr Gold Cup, which was abandoned last Saturday due to a waterlogged track in Scotland.
The race had a different look to it seven days on, with a field of 17 rather than 25 going to post, but it was nevertheless a competitive heat.
The Andrew Balding-trained Donjuan Triumphant was a 13-2 chance in the hands of PJ
Donjuan Triumphant ridden by P J McDonald enters the parade ring after winning McDonald, having bounced back to winning form at Haydock a little over three weeks ago.
Stake Acclaim, who like Donjuan Triumphant was in the line-up at Ayr last week, looked set to prevail after kicking for home, but Balding’s charge eventually wore him down and the pair flashed by the post almost as one.
After a brief wait, the judge confirmed Donjuan Triumphant had got up by a shorthead.
Ice Age and Mr Lupton were third and fourth respectively.
Balding was supervising his runners at Newmarket from where he said: “I am delighted with him. He missed the break which was not ideal, but in the circumstances PJ gave him an excellent ride and he deserved to win a race like that.
“He ran in the Stewards’ Cup and he was a bit unlucky there. He is a handy horse and he is in on Champions’ Day.
“He loves this soft ground so we might well have a go in the Sprint as he had some very good form for Richard (Fahey) in top-class sprints.
“We might just see how we go. I was certainly confident he had another good race in him.”