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where the horse is always the hero
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Posted 2017-09-09 23:10:54  
Harry Angel flies to Sprint Cup glory at Haydock

Harry Angel quashed any fears about the heavy ground with a tremendous performance to win the 32Red Sprint Cup at Haydock.

Connections only gave the go-ahead to run less than an hour before the six-furlong Group One and the decision was fully justified as the Clive Cox-trained colt put in a top-class display to destroy the opposition.

Adam Kirby had the Godolphin-owned three-year-old up with the pace from the outset, before pulling clear by showing a brilliant turn of foot.

The 2-1 favourite went on to score by four lengths from Tasleet, with The Tin Man a further length and a half away in third.

Kirby said: "I'm a believer in a proper champion can win on any ground, but he's so fast I was a little bit concerned. It's a great team effort and all credit to Clive. I knew he'd won as soon as he picked up.

"He's a machine. He's got speed to burn and that's not how good he is, he's there now mentally and he'll keep on getting better."

Cox said: "It was a case of 'déjà vu' - we had the same decision to make with Lethal Force a few years ago and he hated the ground. He's so good on fast ground, there had to be a chance he wouldn't go on it, but he's proved he goes on any ground now.

"It's difficult to change gear on ground like that and to win by four lengths against soft-ground horses was super. He's a champion on fast ground and he's proved a champion on easier ground now, I'm so pleased."

The Qipco British Champions Sprint at Ascot on October 21 will be the next target for Harry Angel.

Cox said: "I hope he stays in training next year. It's a huge relief after walking the course, as that ground is as bad as it gets.

"Thank goodness we made the right decision, he's maturing all the time and now we know we can head to Ascot without worrying what the ground does."

William Haggas said of Tasleet, who banished memories of his July Cup effort when he was well behind Harry Angel: "He ran a very good race, but we're going to have to come up with a way of beating Clive's horse. We can't just let him have an easy lead and put the race to bed.

"I think it's clear we're better on soft ground now so we'll head to Ascot next I think."

James Fanshawe felt conditions had not helped The Tin Man, who was second 12 months ago.

He said: "He ran very well again, but the ground has blunted his speed. Ever since Royal Ascot, the main aim has been to head back to Ascot on Champions Day as he runs so well there." 

BHB

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