No Heretic defies odds at Newmarket

No Heretic defies odds at Newmarket

No Heretic made a stylish return to action in the Qipco Supporting British Racing Stakes at Newmarket.

Gelded over the winter and making his first appearance since finishing a close third in the Mallard Stakes at Doncaster last September, David Simcock's five-year-old was a 12-1 shot in the hands of William Buick.

Never too far off the pace, No Heretic battled his way to the lead in the straight as the pacemaking Apache faded.

He then dug deep in the final furlong to hold off the challenges Suegioo and Opinion by a length and a quarter and a neck respectively.

Simcock said: "He's a big horse and carries lots of condition. I wasn't sure how ready he was, and I'd like to think there's plenty of improvement yet.

"We've gelded him and he probably suffered from the very soft ground year last year.

"He's a real fast-ground horse and he enjoyed the ground out there.

"The Ebor is the very obvious race as a long-term (aim), and if we can race twice more before then and maybe find another one for him to win that would be great."

Michael Stoute's Dank (4-1) edged out the Henry Cecil-trained Chigun in a thrilling climax to the Qatar Bloodstock Dahlia Stakes.

Saturday's course winner Boonga Roogeta led for the early part of the race as she chased an audacious 24-hour double, but soon gave way to Thistle Bird.

The latter was tackled by Dank and Chigun heading inside the final furlong and that pair soon asserted to fight it out.

Dank and Ryan Moore looked to have won the argument, but Chigun came back tenaciously under Tom Queally to almost join her on the line.

The judge called Dank the winner of the Group Three prize by a short head.

Thistle Bird ran with credit in third, but last year's Oaks runner-up Shirocco Star was a disappointing 5-2 favourite, passing the post fifth of seven.

Moore, who rode in the Kentucky Derby on Saturday evening, said: "She's very honest and stayed on very well.

"She's probably not quite there yet, either."

Successful owner-breeder James Wigan said: "That (Windsor Forest Stakes, Royal Ascot) is a possibility.

"Ryan said she stays very well."

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