Turkey: Topkapi triumph for Balding with Blond Me

Andrew Balding landed the most valuable race in Turkey

  PICTURE: Martin Lynch 

 By David Baxter 4:25PM 4 SEP 2016 

Report: Turkey, Sunday

Veliefendi: Longines International Topkapi Trophy (Group 2) 1m, turf, 3yo+

ANDREW BALDING continued the dominance of British trainers in the Topkapi Trophy  as Blond Me came with a telling late charge under Oisin Murphy.


Since 2008 only Mike de Kock has broken the British stranglehold on the race, and Blond Me made the most of a weak race for the grade.

It looked like Saeed Bin Suroor was going to bag another prize at the track’s international meeting, but Silent Attack threw away his chance when jinking right with the race at his mercy.

The win gave jockey Oisin Murphy a first win on Turkish soil, and he was pleased with Blond Me’s display: “It was a tough performance and she took advantage of the Godolphin horse swerving in front of her.”

Barbara Keller, owner of the four-year-old filly, showed her elation in the aftermath of the race: “I love when a plan comes together. I want to win the Canadian International, but the quarantine regulations rules her out of running this year. The plan is to go there next year.”

Also on Sunday

Veliefendi: International Bosphorus Cup (Group 2) 1m4f, turf, 3yo+

There was better luck for Bin Suroor earlier on the card as Move Up finished off best under Mickael Barzalona.

A progressive handicapper, Move Up thwarted local runner Fly By Me, who had made good progress on the rail only to be cut down late.

Saeed bin Suroor reported his string to be getting over the virus that has plagued his yard: “Some of the horses are still not right but they are getting better,” he said.

“We have come because every year we come here and every year we have winners. The races are getting better every year so to get two Group 2s is a good result.”

Veliefendi: International Trakya Trophy (Local Group 3) 6f, turf, 2yo

There was an overdue local success at the meeting as Waneta triumphed despite wandering all over the track in the straight.

The unbeaten filly did not stay on a true line, and gave runner-up Top Score a hefty bump but held on by a head.

Sean Levey, who was aboard Top Score, objected to the result, but after an inquiry, the stewards confirmed the placings.

Waneta’s handler Baha Yargi will now aim the filly at the Turkish equivalent of the Middle Park, and said: “She will run in the Group 1 here in two months but I will tell you next year how good she is – I want to follow the other horses who we have beaten and see how they do.”

Horse Racing News | Racing Post

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