News » Missed The Cut and Summerghand star in Fast-Track Qualifiers at Lingfield Park

Missed The Cut and Summerghand star in Fast-Track Qualifiers at Lingfield Park

Missed The Cut (near) wins the BetUK Churchill Stakes. Image: John Hoy.

Missed The Cut and Summerghand confirmed their places for Finals Day with last-gasp victories in the two Fast-Track Qualifiers at Lingfield Park this afternoon.

 

Missed The Cut returned to the level of form that saw him bolt up in the Golden Gates Handicap at Royal Ascot as he charged home to win the Listed BetUK Churchill Stakes over 10 furlongs.

 

Held up by Jim Crowley on his first start since finishing fifth in the G2 Prix Guillaume d’Ornano in August, the well-backed 5/4 favourite had plenty to do after switching widest of all with three furlongs remaining.

 

Algiers appeared to have the race at his mercy after poaching several lengths off the home turn but Missed The Cut steadily eroded the deficit before surging close home to get up on the line in a track record time of 2m 0.29s.

 

Harrovian was three and a quarter lengths further back in third, with last year’s G1 Belmont Derby winner Bolshoi Ballet fourth on his first appearance in almost a year.

 

Winning trainer George Boughey said: “Missed The Cut has always promised to be a good horse.

 

“He probably got a bit too far back today and Jim was the first to admit that. Simon and Ed Crisford’s horse [Algiers] ran a massive race and we have done very well to run him down.

 

“Missed The Cut has not missed a day in preparation for this. He had a gallop here and also went to Chelmsford. There was another race for him here in a month’s time but he got here ready to go.”

 

Regarding future plans, Boughey added: “He has some very influential foreign owners now and the plan has always been to travel him. He has a dirt pedigree, being by Quality Road, and he could be on the plane to Dubai.

 

“The main thing is that he can train on the dirt out there and then we can see. There is the Maktoum Challenge R1 over a mile, and then the second leg is over nine and a half furlongs, but there are also the turf races as well.”

 

Crowley said: “From that draw in stall 10, it was always going to be a bit difficult. I would have liked to get a more prominent position but I did not want to be parked up on the outside with no cover.

 

“At the top of the hill, there was nothing really taking me into the race, and I had to come around horses. In fairness, the second has probably nicked five, six or seven lengths on us turning in, if not more, and Missed The Cut showed a really good attitude to mow him down.”

Class came to the fore in the Listed BetUK Golden Rose Stakes over six furlongs, with 2/1 favourite Summerghand edging out fellow G3 winner Judicial in another pulsating finish.

 

The duo raced off the pace in the early stages before coming with strong challenges in the straight. Judicial led narrowly inside the final furlong but could not resist Summerghand’s closing burst along the rail, with a half-length separating them at the line.

 

Trained by David O’Meara, Summerghand was recording his second success over the course and distance having landed the All-Weather Sprint Championships on Finals Day in 2021, for which today’s contest was a Fast-Track Qualifier.

 

It also continued a fine recent run of form for the eight-year-old, who captured the prestigious Ayr Gold Cup in September before an excellent second in the G3 Bengough Stakes at Ascot.

 

Winning jockey Danny Tudhope said: “Summerghand has been a super horse for his owner and trainer over the years.

 

“The race went to plan. They went a nice gallop in front and, once he starts picking off one or two in the straight, he then goes through the gears.

 

“You always need a bit of luck on this lad – that’s the way he is. I did not want to be on the rail so I stayed off it but then got a nice run up the rail in the straight.

 

“When he is in good form, he is well capable of winning big races like this. You could say that he is as good as ever. That is David for you – he is very good with these older horses.

 

“I would say that Finals Day will be the target.”

 

Judicial, the winner of this race in 2019, showed that he is still a force to be reckoned with at the age of 10 and trainer Julie Camacho confirmed that he will stay in training next year.

 

Camacho said: “I hate finishing second but cannot be disappointed with Judicial. He has been a star for us.

 

“Jim [Crowley] said the horse did everything right. He raced nicely in his hands but was just beaten by a better horse who was entitled to beat him on the books.

 

“The plan was to come here and get the win and you’re in for Finals Day but that didn’t work. He is pals with Makanah and I think they will have their holiday together now, although I will speak to the Elite Racing team.”