DUKE Of Firenze opened his account for Bawtry trainer David Griffiths with an authoritative success in the Betfred “Supports Jack Berry House” Stakes at York.
Rated in excess of 100 during previous stints with Sir Michael Stoute and Robert Cowell, the seven-year-old sprinter had made a promising start for his new connections, placing at Epsom and Lingfield this spring.
The high-class performer probably hit the front too soon under Ryedale-based jockey David Allan and was idling in front when challenged late on by the favourite Brando.
A former winner of the Investec Dash, Epsom’s five-furlong sprint on Derby day, this appears to be a ready-made target for Duke Of Firenze who has been revitalised by Griffiths.
“I’m delighted,,” said the trainer, a former tutor at Doncaster’s Northern Racing College.
“He seems to pull up a bit in front, but he has done it really well
“Hopefully he’ll go for the Dash at Epsom with a chance.
“There is a race back here on May 21 before that and there’s a £100,000 bonus for any horse that can win that and go on and win the Scottish Sprint Cup at Musselburgh).
“That would be asking him to run three races in a short space of time, though, and he only ran at Lingfield six days ago, so we’ll see.
“The Dash is probably the main aim as the money is fantastic and it’s on Derby day, which is where everyone wants to be.”