Owner Barry Hurley is dreaming of Group One glory in Dubai after Captain Cat strutted his stuff in the betfred.com Superior Mile at Haydock.
The Group Two Joel Stakes at Newmarket is the likely next step for the five-year-old before attempting to make the fairytale come true next spring with a crack at the Dubai Duty Free at Meydan.
Roger Charlton’s five-year-old had looked good in winning a Salisbury Group Three but failed to hit the expected heights when third in the Celebration Mile at Goodwood, although James Doyle, his rider that day, was quick to blame himself for giving him too much to do.
Back in a Group Three, Captain Cat (15-8 favourite) travelled well throughout in the hands of George Baker, making smooth progress before being pushed out for a length-and-a-half win over Balty Boys.
Barry Hurley, who owns the gelding under the banner of his company Seasons Holidays, said: "When he got beat at Goodwood last time James rang up and apologised.
“There was no way he could make up 12 lengths in one furlong but he was only beaten a length and three-quarters at the line.
“The Joel Stakes, a Group Two, at Newmarket is next. I think he’s a Group One horse and the
dream is to go to Meydan for the Dubai Duty Free. Roger did it with Cityscape and we’d like to follow that route.”
There was drama at the start of the Betfred TV Old Borough Cup as favourite Havana Cooler dumped jockey Richard Hughes on the turf as the stalls opened.
Glenard set out to make all, but it was the John Gosden-trained Nautilus (10-1), who came late to land the spoils under Nicky Mackay by a length from Epsom Hill.
“I won on him at Newmarket last time and he ran away with me. He’s proved today he’s versatile, that he can make all or be held up and come from behind,” said Mackay.
While Hughes escaped unhurt, Havana Cooler appears to have sustained a leg injury.
Trainer Luca Cumani’s wife Sara said: “He may have fractured a pastern. He’s gone straight to the vets in Newmarket to have it X-rayed.”
Kickboxer (10-1) struck a blow for the three-year-olds when beating his elders in the Betfred Mobile Be Friendly Handicap.
Luke Morris produced Mick Channon’s charge’s to lead a furlong out and score by two lengths from Long Awaited.
“I rode him before at York where he ran well and that bit of rain has helped him. He’s a proper tough, hardy horse,” said Morris.
Morris completed a double on Celestial Path (11-8 favourite), who earned a quote of 33-1 for the Qipco 2000 Guineas when easily winning the Betfred Fun And Friendly Stakes.
The son of Footstepsinthesand, trained by Sir Mark Prescott, was stepping into Listed company straight from winning a maiden on his debut and duly trotted up by four lengths from Medrano.
Morris said: “He’s done it really well in the end. He’s still mentally a big baby, but he’s done it nicely.
“The first time I sat on him in his work at home he felt quite good then. He’s taking his races well and is going the right way.”
Teruntum Star (10-1) bounced back after failing to sparkle in the Gimcrack at York last month as he swept to victory in the Betfred Goals Galore Nursery.
Kevin Ryan kept faith with this youngster and was not surprised to see him collect as he landed a convincing success under Jamie Spencer by three and a quarter lengths from Inniscastle Lad.
“He’s a very good horse and we think an awful lot of him,” said the Malton handler
“I told Jamie to ride him like a good horse and he gave him a fantastic ride. He locked him up, waited for the gap and then took it. A bit of juice in the ground helped him.
“This horse is backward, he’s raw and will be a lovely horse for next year.”
The Cumani team finally had some luck when Mizzou (5-2 favourite) completed a hat-trick in taking the Betfred Supports Jack Berry House Handicap by a length and three-quarters under Adam Kirby.
Mrs Cumani said: “He did it very nicely and it’s nice to win three on the bounce.
“He’ll stay further and he’s a nice horse to look forward to for next year.”