News Column

Rampant outsiders take Musselburgh by storm

June 8, 2014

Martin Hannan

ON A day of high-priced shocks for punters at Musselburgh, no win caused greater surprise than 33-1 Hesketh Bank, winner of the GBP60,000 totescoop6 Edinburgh Cup.It looked as though Scots-born Mark Johnston, who had no fewer than five of the 13 entrants for the race, might indeed have won the Cup as his Master of Finance forged into the lead under Joe Fanning in the home straight, but PJ McDonald aboard Hesketh Bank had the break covered.Having only his fourth outing on a racecourse, the Richard Fahey-trained Hesketh Bank looked uncertain about what to do, but the wily McDonald soon had him under control and the colt eventually did his job nicely. Innocent Touch stayed on for third under Patrick Mathers to make it a 1-3 for trainer Fahey.McDonald said: "He ran a bit green but, once he straightened up ,he did it well."In front of a record crowd for the fixture of 6,000 - 8.8 per cent up on last year - the meeting started well for favourite backers with Cara's Request making every yard of the running to win the Bet toteplacepot handicap at the rewarding odds of 5-2.It then began to cascade bad news for the followers of short-priced horses.The five-furlong sprint went to the rank outsider KO Cache, the 33-1 shot, who saw off much more fancied horses for Scottish trainer Keith Dalgleish and jockey Tom Eaves.Mark Johnston has been the most successful trainer at Musselburgh for many years and his three-year-old Ifwecan, a 16-1 shot owned by Douglas Livingston, bagged the Bet totequadpot handicap over a mile.Rain had been forecast for around 3pm and it duly arrived at 2.55pm. It didn't much affect the Edinburgh Cup half an hour later but, by the time the 4.30pm Bet totexacta handicap was run, the ground was loose and saturated.Often that suits the horse which gets first run on the field, and that was the outsider of the field, 20-1 shot Dance King, who repelled allcomers to win emphatically for trainer Tim Easterby.Evens favourite Eutropius could then only finish second to 100-30 shot Bartack, the mount of Sam James, in the totepool Supporting the Sport You Love handicap.Relief for punters came in the closing Bet totetrifecta handicap when 100-30 favourite Rothesay Chancer, trained in Renfrewshire by Jim Goldie and ridden by Graham Lee, got home by a nose in an exciting four-way finish.

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Source: Scotland on Sunday

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