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Ayr

  • 15:20 William Hill Ayr Gold Cup 6f

  • (Heritage Handicap) £120,000 added 3yo+ 26 ran
  • Winner £74,700 2nd £22,368 3rd £11,184 4th £5,592
  • Going: Soft, Heavy in places in the back straight
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 1m 15.35s
  • Off time: 15:21:58

Our Jonathan strikes Gold

Ryan ace lands big pot

Last Updated: 17/09/11 4:38pm

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Our Jonathan: Ayr Gold Cup winner

Our Jonathan: Ayr Gold Cup winner

Kevin Ryan's Our Jonathan won the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup under Franny Norton on Saturday.

The four-year-old was second in the Great St Wilfred at Ripon last time out and went one better in Scotland to beat the well-backed 6-1 favourite Eton Rifles by two lengths.

Son Of the Cat (18-1) edged out Colonel Mak (16-1) for third place.

Pastoral Player stayed on well for fifth.

A delighted Norton, a veteran of the weighing room, said: "I've been on two horses in the past that I've been meant to ride and they have gone on to win, so this is great. This horse is special to Marwan too, so it's double delight really."

Winning owner Dr Marwan Koukash had celebrated 12 months ago when the Dandy Nicholls-trained Redford won in his colours.

Delighted

Norton went on: "I was supposed to ride Redford last year, and Bahamian Pirate a few years ago (2000), so I am not winning it out of turn.

"Marwan has brought a bit of life back into the game, he has got 80 horses in training and it is incredible what he is doing. We are both from Liverpool, so it is a great day for us all.

"I was messed about a bit in the race, a horse at the side of me kept poking out, but we went to the leaders and I had a look across the course to try and see if those on the other side were in front, and then I let him off at the furlong marker and he went and did his job."

Sparkling

Ryan said: "He has been threatening all season, but he has been gradually coming to hand all the time and he has really been sparkling in the last 10 days.

"When the ground came as testing as it is, I was pleased because he has form over seven furlongs and for a race like this you need a staying sprinter.

"We really had him in good order and I wasn't really concerned about the draw - my daughter Amy rode Advanced to finish third in the Silver Cup (earlier on the card) and they came up the middle. I think people read too much into it (the draw).

"Franny rode the horse so well at Chester, and Marwan let him keep the ride. He gave him a great ride."

Same Again

Koukash said: "It is great to win the race again. He is a very good horse, he had good form as a two-year-old - he lost his way a bit last season, but he is now back to his best.

"There is a seven-furlong race at Ascot which is a possibility, Redford won it after this race last year, and then there is a Listed race at Doncaster on the last day of the season.

"Franny rode the horse very well at Chester and he has missed out on this race on a couple of occasions, so it is great to give him a big winner."

Connections of Pepper Lane, who had beaten the winner last time out at Ripon in the Great St Wilfrid, had no explanation for the poor run of the filly, who beat only four home.

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