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Gordon Lord Byron wins Betfred Sprint Cup for Tom Hogan and Johnny Murtagh

Updated: Saturday, 07 Sep 2013 20:11 | Comments

Gordon Lord Byron led home an Irish 1-2 in the Haydock feature
Gordon Lord Byron led home an Irish 1-2 in the Haydock feature

Gordon Lord Byron made amends for his narrow defeat 12 months ago when running away with the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock.

The Tom Hogan-trained five-year-old did gain compensation in the Prix de la Foret last autumn after being beaten by Society Rock and he registered his second Group One triumph with a demolition job in this six-furlong showpiece.

Helped by Heeraat setting the pace on the far rail, Gordon Lord Byron (7-2) was always travelling easily for Johnny Murtagh.

Taking it up with two furlongs to go, he quickly put daylight between himself and his rivals and won as he liked by three lengths from another Irish raider Slade Power (9-1).

Hoof It (33-1) was three-quarters of a length away in third place.

Lethal Force, the Diamond Jubilee Stakes and July Cup winner, was well-beaten on the rain-softened ground. 

"I felt today was his day and hopefully he will keep on improving this year" - Tom Hogan on the winner

Murtagh said afterwards: "He was different today. I don't know if it was the ground, but when I got to the three marker I was taking him back.

"I let him coast down to the two and when I gave him a couple of cracks, unlike the last time I rode him when he was hard work, today he was just electric and he picked up really well and won easy.

"He ran very well in France (Prix Maurice de Gheest). He's very tough and was staying on really well on ground that was probably quicker than ideal.

"Today he was different. He looked different. The girl who rides him out said he was in a different zone."

Hogan admitted he had high hopes for his runner before the off.

He said: "I knew that he had improved at this time of year every year. I knew last week he was well.

"I felt today was his day and hopefully he will keep on improving this year.

"I think we will go for the Foret and then we might look at the QEII and go for a Group One over a mile for a change.

"He went to Hong Kong last year over a mile and that would be another option to go back if we get invited." 

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