Emaraaty Ana was able to dismiss the late thrust of Starman to win a dramatic race and claim the Betfair Sprint Cup at Haydock. The five-year-old gelding, trained by Kevin Ryan, showed that his 40-1 second to Winter Power in the Nunthorpe Stakes at York last month was no fluke as he took the Group One showpiece over six furlongs.
Art Power burst out of the stalls and soon set up a decent lead, with Supremacy leading the pack and Emaraaty Ana close to the pace. Emaraaty Ana (11-1) picked off Art Power over a furlong out and set sail for home.
Starman, who was under pressure some way out, stayed on strongly – but Emaraaty Ana held on by a short head. Chil Chil was three-quarters of a length back in third, with Happy Romance fourth.
Jockey Andrea Atzeni discusses Emaraaty Ana’s victory
Last year he was a little bit disappointing but he has come back to this level and I’ve had every belief in this horse. I always thought he would get back to the top level. He got beat in a Group One by a horse from a great friend of mine last time.
“I’m just delighted to get him back where he should be. Andrea gave him a great ride and he has had a lot to do with him as well.
“I would say we would go for the Breeders’ Cup. I can’t see why not as he would be tailor made for it as they would go a fast pace on fast ground.”
Winning jockey Andrea Atzeni praised his winner, but admitted he had not been sure they had won even after being congratulated by his rivals.
He said: “I wasn’t sure if I got it in the photo finish. William (Buick) came up to me to congratulate me and so did Hollie Doyle but I wasn’t overly sure. When the result came up I couldn’t believe it. I thought Starman had just got me on the line but he actually won quite cosily in the end.
“We came to give him half a chance. He is a horse that we usually ride fairly forward. As he ran so well in the Nunthorpe giving him a chance we wanted to do the same. He travelled like the best horse in the race and when I let him down he picked up good. To be fair to the horse when the second horse came to him he found a little bit more and held on.
“I think the Breeders’ Cup could be for him. He is obviously a gelding and with these horses you think you would be looking for prize money wherever that is. That could be the Breeders’ Cup or it could be Dubai next year.
“He is a horse that loves fast ground. I will have to speak to the boss when I get back in but I would say Dubai (Al Quoz) sprint could be his main target early next year.”
Trainer Ed Walker said of runner-up Starman: “There is not a lot to say. There are no excuses. It’s disappointing.”
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