Players books possible weekend return

Players Please could make a rapid return to action in a valuable contest at the weekend following his impressive success in the Hygicare Handicap at Thirsk.

Players Please could make a rapid return to action in a valuable contest at the weekend following his impressive success in the Hygicare Handicap at Thirsk.

Sent off at 7-2, the three-year-old was soon ushered into the lead by Greg Fairley and the duo set just a fair tempo until turning for home.

Lit up at this point, the Mark Johnston-trained winner found an impressive turn of foot and kept up the gallop to hold off Generous Jem – who was seeking a four-timer in the 12-furlong event – by an authoritative three lengths.

“He deserved that so much as he’s been running really well and got boxed in and hit with a whip at Goodwood (three starts ago),” said Deirdre Johnston, representing her husband.

“We decided to try stepping him up in trip and he loved it just bowling along in front today.

“He’s actually in a big handicap at Newbury on Saturday (John Smith’s Stakes), but we didn’t think he’d get in. This might just let him sneak in with a penalty now.

“It is back over a mile and a quarter and we haven’t got too far (with plans), but we’ll certainly keep our options open.”

Another to impress ahead of a potential quick reappearance was the Alan Dickman-trained Inter Vision, who registered an impressive two-and-a-half-length victory in the Shirley Carter Handicap.

In beating Guest Connections to justify favouritism at 2-1, the tough and reliable seven-year-old landed leg two of a 14-1 double for jockey Daniel Tudhope.

Dickman later notched a double of his own when the Michael Stainton-ridden Ishetoo (85-40) proved too strong for his rivals in the White Swan at Ampleforth Handicap.

Plans for Dickman’s pair are far from set in stone – but both are likely to bid for more glory soon.

Explaining the situation, the trainer said: “They could both run in different handicaps at Chester the weekend after next.

“Inter Vision is in the Ayr Silver Cup (Friday) but might not get in that. It might rain before that too and he wants quicker ground so we might end up going to Chester.

“It’s been a marvellous day. I’ve only got 12 horses and we don’t have two winners very often.

“The two young lads have given them both great rides. They know how to ride these two and both were very cool.”

Tudhope’s first winner came aboard Jim Goldie’s Grandad Bill (4-1 favourite), who was delivered with an expertly-timed run to take the Whernside Handicap by a short head.

Glasgow handler Goldie was all smiles after witnessing the recent acquisition provide a quick return on his investment.

“I bought him at Newmarket about six weeks ago and I’d like to say it was well-planned, but we went to buy Cactus Rose and were the under-bidders on that one,” explained the winning handler.

Inspector Clouseau and Writingonthewall had earlier registered the first wins of their respective careers.

There was much to like about the Tom Tate-trained Inspector Clouseau, who landed odds of 3-1 in the Hygicare Maiden by a cosy length and three-quarters.

Tate said: “We had a sale organised but it fell through and I ended up owning him myself.

“That might not be so bad now, but he wasn’t cheap and he’ll be for sale now.”

Writingonthewall took a stride or two to find top gear in the opening Ingleborough Median Auction Maiden, but the Jamie Spencer-ridden 5-4 favourite got the job done comfortably enough by a neck from Actabou.

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