In our preview of the weekend races at Mumbai scheduled for 24th March, we focused on a race for three-year-olds maidens, as well as Grade III event for older Indian thoroughbreds. Here is how events panned out at the Mahalaxmi Race Course in Mumbai last Sunday.

Mahalaxmi Race Course: Racing Review For March 24th

The Karl Umrigar Trophy

This was a 1400m race for young colts and fillies that were yet to pick up the first wins of their horse racing career. Only Indian thoroughbreds were allowed in the race at the Mahalaxmi Race Course, and there nine horses in the running.

Based on past form, Copper Queen and Principessa were tipped to be the front runners, with Cliffs of Capri given an outside chance. None of those horses managed to end in the money, though. Cliffs of Capri came the closest at fourth.

1. Kildare

This was Kildare’s first race and the debutant has made a flying start to its racing career with a win in the first attempt. Born into a good stock, sired by the great Leitir Mor, Kildare has several half-brothers and sisters who have all won at the races in India, especially in Hyderabad. Ridden by jockey Sandesh, with SK Sunderji as the trainer, Kildare took home the prize with a time of 1:24:167.

2. Conscience

Conscience had one race in her kitty prior to Sunday, having finished middle of the pack in a 1200m race in early March. An extra couple of hundred metres seems to have improved her performance somewhat. The Mahesh Narredu trained filly cantered home in second place with a time of 1:24:533.

3. Sunrise Ruby

Yet another debutante from the stables of Hosidar Daji, Sunrise Ruby was not highly fancied for this race. Yet she managed to hold on to third place with a spirited run under jockey NS Parmar on Sunday. Sunrise Ruby was neck and neck with Conscience in second, and finished with an identical time of 1:24:533

RM & Rukmani Goculdas Million

This 1400m Grade III race held at the Mahalaxmi Race Course had just five horses in the running. It was open to all Indian thoroughbreds above four years of age. New England was our pick for the race winner, with Turning Point expected to run him close. Meanwhile, our long shot tip was Grand Accord. But with such a narrow field marked by fine margins, it was the other two horses who stole the show. Hot favourite New England managed to hang onto third in the end.

1. Bateleur

Bateleur only had a 40% strike rate in his last ten races and was coming back to racing after a year off the track. This 5-year old gelding was never short of potential, although there was always a nagging doubt regarding his legs. At least in Sunday’s race, he laid those to rest with a convincing performance under jockey Neeraj Rawal, finishing with a time of 1:22:037.

2. Master of Universe

Trained by Bipin Salvi, this 5-year-old came to Mumbai with high expectations, having scored 3 wins in 4 races at Mysore. He seems to have acclimatised well to the Mumbai conditions in the races he has run so far. Considered by many to be an outside chance, Master of Universe ultimately managed to best crowd favourite New England to the runner’s up position with a time of 1:22:447.

3. New England

This gelding had been in the form of his life this season with multiple top-three finishes including two wins. The overall record is also quite impressive with 8 wins in 25 starts prior to Sunday. But this time around, New England could not come out ahead. Still, yet another top-three finish only adds more allure to its record this season. Trained by Imtiaz A Sait, the six-year-old was ridden by jockey A Sandesh as he reached a time of 1:22:594 to get ahead of Turning Point.

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