/ Racing

Dream victory for Turner in July Cup

Updated: Saturday, 09 Jul 2011 16:33

Dream Ahead (l) - Hayley Turner's mount leads eventual third Hitchens (r) in the July cup
Dream Ahead (l) - Hayley Turner's mount leads eventual third Hitchens (r) in the July cup

Hayley Turner landed her first Group One triumph when steering Dream Ahead to a magnificent success in the Darley July Cup at Newmarket.

David Simcock’s stable star returned to his brilliant two-year-old form in sensational style to prove himself a top-class sprinter.
The 7-1 chance produced a devastating turn of foot to hit the front inside the last 50 yards and win by half a length from Bated Breath.

After the success of Brae Hill in the Bunbury Cup, the field followed his example by going to the stands’ side. Libranno made the running from Amico Fritz with Oracle, Bated Breath and Elzaam all close up and Dream Ahead tucked in behind.

Bated Breath made his bid for glory as the field hit the rising ground, but Dream Ahead found an extra gear when switched out from the rail to make his late challenge.

Last season’s joint champion juvenile swept into the lead and put the race to bed in a matter of strides.

A delighted Turner, only the second female to ride a Group One winner in Britain, the first being Alex Greaves on Ya Malak 14 years ago, said: ‘It’s massive. I’m just thrilled. It’s really fantastic.

‘I haven’t sat on the horse before so I can’t take much credit. Obviously David has done a fantastic job and thanks to the owners for having me on board.

‘Steve (Drowne’s) horse (Bated Breath) started to hang right and caused a bit of interference, but it’s always the case when you’re on a horse that travels so well that he gets you out of trouble.

‘I’m just delighted about it.’

Simcock said: ‘It’s fantastic. I’m quite relieved, excited - all the emotions really.

‘I’m really pleased for the horse and more so that he has enhanced last year’s reputation this year. It’s all about the horse at the end of the day and I’m delighted for him.

‘On Friday I was quite surprised how good the ground was. I walked the course this morning and we said as long as it was safe we’d run and as long as it was like it was in Deauville last year when he won the Prix Morny we’d run.

‘It was a different scenario leading up to Ascot because we were running him over a mile and we didn’t really want to run him on very fast ground.

‘There’s a great cover of grass here and we’re very relieved we ran him.

‘He travelled very well and I was quite relieved when Brae Hill won the Bunbury Cup from the near side. It made it very uncomplicated for us.

‘Hayley was very confident going into the race. What he has got is a great turn of foot and he showed that today.’

Simcock explained how Turner came to get the ride.

‘William (Buick) would have been first choice but he had to ride at York. Jamie Spencer would have definitely been second choice but he’s abroad in America,’ the Newmarket trainer added.

‘Hayley has ridden winners for me and I was very confident. The majority of the time it’s about the horse not about the jockey.

‘She's a confident girl and deserved this. We’ll probably go for the Prix Maurice de Gheest with him next.’

Turner has been based with Newmarket trainer Michael Bell for a decade, and he told Racing UK: ‘From a very early age she always looked a special talent, she rides like a man.

‘She's natural and very strong. Hayley has been the pathfinder, she has done it without family connections and has done it well.’