Makin fires 78/1 opening day Ayr treble

Phillip Makin was the star of the show on the first day of the Ayr Gold Cup meeting yesterday with a 78-1 treble.

Makin, who made the headlines at York in August with a four-timer which included the John Smith’s Cup, teamed up with John Quinn in the opener and then continued a fruitful relationship with Keith Dalgleish for the other two.

Speed Company was sent off the 6-4 favourite in the British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes to follow up his win at Musselburgh and looks set for a nice season next year over middle distances.

“He found seven furlongs too sharp last time, I thought he’d be happier over this trip (mile) and it felt to me the further he went the better he went,” said Makin.

“It’s riding like good ground, there should be no excuses all weekend.

“He’s very similar to last years winner (Quinn’s Moonlightnavigator) and I can’t see 10 furlongs being a problem next year.

“He’s a busy horse, always has been, but he’s very professional.”

Keith Dalgleish will be well represented all weekend and got off to the perfect start when Argaki (10-1) ran out a comfortable winner from Kiwi Bay in the Hillhouse Quarry Supporting The Ayrshire Hospice Handicap.

The five-year-old was winning for the fourth time this season “He winged the gates and it gave me the option to do whatever I wanted,” said Makin.

“Keith is adamant the horse needs daylight and it just went perfectly, he travelled well and stuck his neck out. Keith’s horses are holding their form really well.”

The highlight of Makin’s treble was undoubtedly Maleficent Queen (15-8 favourite) in the EBF Stallions Scottish Premier Series Fillies’ Handicap. She was cut into 33-1 for the Cambridgeshire by Betfred when taking her career record to three from four.

Having travelled much the best, Next Stop was closing on her all the way to the line without ever looking likely to get there and went down by a neck.

Scott Wright, who owns the winner along with his father, said: “It’s been excellent, she wasn’t so good at the start, but then it looked like she’d win easy before it looked as if she might get caught.

“My dad is over in Azerbaijan so he’ll be gutted he’s missed it. I think we’re looking at going up in grade now, hopefully she’ll keep on improving.”


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