Mixed seaside fortune for Hughes
Last Updated: August 7, 2013 6:52pm
Richard Hughes: Ruled out of the Ebor at York
Richard Hughes landed the EBF Stallions/Laines Best Fillies' Handicap at Brighton when riding a positive race on William Haggas's progressive Floating Along - but the race was not without its drama for the in-form rider.
The 11/4 joint-favourite eventually clung on by head from Maid A Million but Hughes picked up a one-day ban for not keeping straight out of the stalls and could miss a potential chance in either the Ebor or Celebration Mile on August 24.
The British Horseracing Authority later tweeted the day could be moved to an alternative date before that scheduled on application.
"She's probably better over six furlongs as she has so much speed but you can get away with it on a turning track," said Hughes.
Mark Johnston remains the man to be feared in the John Smith's Brighton Mile as Party Royal gave the Middleham trainer his third victory from the last five runnings of the August Festival feature.
His record looks even better considering there were no Johnston runners in the previous two renewals, with Licence To Till dead-heating in 2010 and My Gacho the outright victor 12 months earlier.
The three-year-old Party Royal has been kept typically busy and finished ninth behind stable companion Maputo when attempting to make all in a more valuable event at the Newmarket July Festival.
Third last time at Ayr, it was only Party Royal's second success in 17 starts but he was pretty determined as he held off fellow 11/2 favourite Bank On Me by a neck.
Jockey Silvestre de Sousa said: "He ran a good race in a big handicap at Newmarket and I think maybe the next race came a bit soon.
"Today he did everything right. When I asked him to go, he put the race to bed."
De Sousa picked up another winner on Dawn Rock (9/2) in division one of the Star Great Pubs & Bars Handicap, and was forgiven hampering Cathy Gannon and the appropriately-named Another Squeeze in the closing stages.
Division two went in a desperate finish to the Jo Hughes-trained Thewinningmachine (8/1), who benefited from a step up in trip.
Mickael Barzalona landed last year's Brighton Mile aboard Frozen Over and despite being without a mount in the £20,000 handicap this time, he was still on the scoresheet to take his course statistics to an impressive four from 11 rides.
Anglophile (8/11 favourite) was a first course runner for Godolphin's new trainer Charlie Appleby in the South East Leisure Group/British Stallion Studs E.B.F. Maiden Stakes, but had finished a promising second over the same seven furlongs a fortnight earlier under Saeed Bin Suroor's name.
Opera Fan jinked in front of the chestnut but Barzalona quickly pushed him two and a quarter lengths clear of his rival.
The young Frenchman said: "It's a different track, like a lot of them in England, but it's very nice and it's good experience for me. I came to lead very easily and he liked the trip and the ground."
Neil Callan claimed a double, firstly when maintaining his solid association with James Tate's Umneyati (9/4 favourite) in the Lexi Boo Strickland Nursery.
The rider had partnered James Tate's juvenile to victory at Lingfield in June and she was narrowly beaten under a different pilot back at the same track in nursery company.
"She's a nice filly and I've been impressed with her performances," said Callan. "I made all when I won on her before but ended up in front sooner than I wanted - the horse in front of me (Mr Dandy Man) hit the rail and I found myself there."
John Ryan's fears over the quick ground for Anginola (7/2) proved unfounded as she hosed up under Callan in the La Corsa Di Cavalli Birra Moretti Selling Handicap.
"I was worried about the ground but they've done a great job here - they put plenty of water on it and there's a good cover," said Ryan.
"We've only had her a couple of months. I don't think she was 100% last time, she didn't want to go in the stalls and I don't know what was bothering her. She was out quickly today and won well."
Declan Bates produced 4/1 chance Koharu to perfection as Peter Makin's filly arrived late on the scene to collar High Tone and land the Maison Maurice Handicap.