Secret Advisor leads home Godolphin Melrose one-two
Three-year-olds Secret Advisor and Bin Battuta, both by Dubawi, provided Godolphin with first and second in the valuable Melrose Handicap at York, UK, on Saturday, August 26, with a neck separating them at the line.
James Doyle partnered the Charlie Appleby-trained Secret Advisor, while Martin Lane took the ride on Bin Battuta.
They were both held up towards the rear of the 19 runners as a good pace was set up front in the near 14-furlong contest.
The Saeed bin Suroor-trained Bin Battuta made the first move, cruising up to the leaders towards the far side in the straight and taking the lead with over two furlongs left.
He was strongly challenged in the final furlong by the eventual third Here And Now but saw him off only for Secret Advisor, who improved to sixth at the distance, to come flying near the far rail and gain the advantage close home. The winning time was 2m 57.27s on good ground.
Charlie Appleby commented: “I am delighted with Secret Advisor.
“We were hoping for a better performance after Goodwood where the ground was too soft for him.
“On his third in the G2 Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot, he had to have a good chance today.
“We will probably put him away now for staying contests next year.”
James Doyle added: “If you drew a line through his run at Goodwood, where the ground was definitely too soft – he could not get out of it – he had to be a leading player following his excellent Royal Ascot run.
“I rode him work the other day on the Limekilns. I am blowing now but I was blowing twice as the much then as he is tough work and quite lazy.
“But he did not half pick up late on today – it was a good performance as they were strung out. I wanted to go up the middle of the course but I got hampered and so I went over to the far side which I thought was the least favoured part of the track.”