daniel tudhope and David O’Meara’s remarkable run of success continued when a rejuvenated Custom Cut recorded his fifth win on the bounce when landing the prestigious Shadwell Joel Stakes on day two of Newmarket’s ultra-competitive Cambridgeshire meeting.
It was another victory of note for The Yorkshire Post’s racing columnist and the in-form Nawton trainer who have been in unstoppable form after G Force provided the pair with their first domestic Group One success when winning the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock.
Now connections hope Custom Cut can graduate, in time, to the highest level after the five-year-old backed up his narrow win in the Strensall Stakes at York’s Ebor meeting last time out with a more convincing success as Tudhope dictated matters from the front before winning by two and a half lengths.
“I think this track suited, he got into a nice relaxed rhythm,” said Tudhope who had signified the horse’s potential in yesterday’s column in The Yorkshire Post.
“Two and half out they were coming, but he saved a bit and he wasn’t going to lie down. He’s improved all year, David’s done a great job and it’s fantastic for the team.
“He’s versatile ground wise, Leopardstown was soft, and I held him up that day, too. Possibly there’s a Group One in him.”
Joint-owner Gary Douglas said: “He’s just improved and improved all year and after winning a Listed and a Group Three the idea was to come here and see how good he is.
“He’s got a few options now, we need to sit down and discuss them all and if David believes he’s up to winning a Group One somewhere then that is what we’ll do. He beat Trade Storm at York and he’s won a Group One since.”
Custom Cut was previously trained in Ireland and offers further evidence of the quietly-spoken O’Meara’s uncanny knack of being able to acquire horses with unfulfilled potential at the sales.
This was also seen to great effect seven days ago when he saddled Louis The Pious, formerly trained by Kevin Ryan, to victory in the Ayr Gold Cup under James Doyle.
It was the only race when Tudhope was out of luck this month – he opted to ride the stable’s more fancied Watchable who then had the misfortune to receive a very unfavourable draw on the far side.
The jockey heads to Haydock today for an eyecatching book of rides – The Lampo Genie is his best chance of a winner – while O’Meara saddles Ingleby Angel, Bartack and Chancery in Newmarket’s Betfred Cambridgeshire, the big betting race of the day as 35 runners race over nine furlongs.
However Luca Cumani believes Velox ticks the right boxes as the Newmarket trainer seeks to win the cavalry charge for a third time at Newmarket on Saturday. Cumani’s two wins in the historic autumn handicap may have come a long time ago, with Century City in 1982 and Dallas in 1986, but in Velox he has a horse with sound credentials.
Winner of the Coral Challenge over a mile at Sandown in July when today’s Barnsley-born jockey Cam Hardie was in the saddle, the four-year-old warmed up for the big race when finishing third at Doncaster two weeks ago.
“He goes for the Cambridgeshire in good form.
“He had a good prep race at Doncaster, so we’re happy with that,” said Cumani whose stable’s resurgence was confirmed by Postponed’s emphatic victory in the Grat Voltigeur at York.
“We’ve got an apprentice who’s won on him before.”