Bielsa’s a winner - at Doncaster Racecourse

Horses at Doncaster Racecourse. (Picture: Mike Egerton/PA Wire)
Horses at Doncaster Racecourse. (Picture: Mike Egerton/PA Wire)
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Torrential rain and heavy ground at Doncaster did little to dampen the dominance of Bielsa, who cruised to a convincing victory in the £20,000 Vertem Leading The Field Handicap.

Kevin Ryan’s gelding seemed to relish the deep ground, travelling well throughout to find himself a ready two-and-a-quarter-length winner on the line.

Trainer Aidan O'Brien is at Doncaster on Saturday (Picture: Nigel French/PA Wire)

Trainer Aidan O'Brien is at Doncaster on Saturday (Picture: Nigel French/PA Wire)

The victory for the 5-1 favourite was something of a comeback for the four-year-old, who disappointed when finishing 15th as market leader in the Portland Handicap on Town Moor in September.

“He travelled well, he had his ears pricked the whole way,” said jockey Kevin Stott.

“He loved the ground. He picked up that little bit when I wanted him to and he did it well. He did it easily, to be honest.”

Mogul will lead a five-strong Aidan O’Brien team into battle in the Vertem Futurity Trophy at Doncaster today, if the course passes a 7.30am inspection

First successful with Saratoga Springs in 1997, the County Tipperary handler has since notched another eight victories – leaving him just one short of the record set by the late Sir Henry Cecil.

Having been responsible for 11 of the 12 juveniles following the confirmation stage, the Ballydoyle trainer has whittled his team down to five, with Mogul set to go off favourite following an impressive Group Two triumph at Leopardstown last month. He is joined by the well-regarded Innisfree. O’Brien said: “Innisfree travels well. We always thought he was a Classic horse and he’s been working nice since the Beresford.”