• Horse Racing

Ile De Re grinds to Northumberland Plate win

ESPN staff
June 30, 2012
Ile De Re justified his favouritism © PA Photos

Ile De Re followed up his victory in the Chester Cup with a gallant win in the Northumberland Plate.

In searching conditions following the heavy rains earlier in the week, Donald McCain's charge justified 5/2 favouritism from Crackentorp.

Ile De Re travelled superbly for Jim Crowley and carted his jockey into the front rank with well over half a mile to run. Crowley had no doubts about his mount's stamina and sent him on at the top of the straight.

Crackentorp and Icon Dream gave chase all the way up the Newcastle straight, but they could not get by the gallant grey who in scoring became the first horse since Attivo in 1974 to land the Chester Cup- Northumberland Plate double in the same season.

Graham Lee secured his first Group race success as a Flat jockey aboard Maarek in the Chipchase Stakes. Having given up on jump racing due to one fall too many, he has adapted well to the Flat game and was seen to excellent effect aboard Maarek.

The soft ground held no terrors for Maarek who, after initially struggling to find a run up the rail, cruised up to the quarters of long-time leader Boastful inside the final furlong and skipped clear for a ready success.

Michelangelo swerved Royal Ascot for a crack at the 150,000 Tattersalls Millions 3-Y-O Cup at Newmarket and it proved an astute move as the favourite scored like a classy performer.

William Buick held up John Gosden's charge at the back of the field and he was in no rush to make his move. Buick angled his charge out with half a mile to run and Michelangelo made ground stylishly.

He took up the running with two furlongs to run and only had to be kept up to his work to hold the challenge of Cameron Highland. Gosden has an excellent record in the St Leger and Michelangelo may well be aimed at the season's final classic.

The Buick-Gosden team pulled off a 33/1 shock in the Fred Archer Stakes, as Polygon bounced back in first time blinkers to topple odds-on favourite Dandino. Hayley Turner brought Dandino, the 4/7f, with what looked like a winning run but Polygon kept finding for pressure and scored by a neck.

Libranno landed the Criterion Stakes for the second year in succession under a superb front running ride from Richard Hughes.

Hughes bounced Libranno out and dictated a modest gallop before winding the pace up inside the final three furlongs. He quickly repelled the threat of favourite Hoof It, who found little for pressure, and held on well from Edinburgh Knight.

City Image maintained her unbeaten record when getting the better of Sandreamer in the Empress Stakes. Richard Hannon's charge still looked a little green as she was bustled along early on, but she responded well and stayed on powerfully to land the Listed prize at odds of 3/1.

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