York sprint test now beckons for Ayr winner Jack Dexter

A TILT at the lucrative Coral Sprint Trophy at York is next on the agenda for Jack Dexter following his impressive performance at Ayr last weekend.

It saw the progressive three-year-old, unraced as a juvenile, secure the third victory of his eye-catching debut year with a comfortable triumph in the Ayr Bronze Cup.

The son of Orientor, one of trainer Jim Goldie’s best horses, appears to be on the upgrade and is bound for the Knavesmire on October 13 for the £75,000 six-furlong handicap.

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The Ayr contest was another big-race success for Bedale-based Graham Lee, who has now ridden an astonishing 65 winners since giving up the jumping game for a new career on the Flat.

The burgeoning partnership between Lee and Goldie, thanks to horses like Jack Dexter and Hawkeyethenoo, has been one of the great success stories of the 2012 Flat campaign.

“He’s come out of the race well. All going well he’ll go to York next month for the Coral Sprint,” said Goldie.

The Scottish trainer was also represented in Saturday’s Ayr Gold Cup by stable star Hawkeyethenoo, the Stewards’ Cup hero, who trailed home in 13th place.

Goldie believes the very testing conditions were to blame for his below-par effort and having scratched him from the Betfred Challenge Cup at Ascot on Saturday week – the Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes on October 20 is his major objective.

“He’s fine. He just couldn’t go on the heavy ground,” said Goldie.

Meanwhile, Saturday’s meeting at Ripon has been abandoned due to flooding after more than 100 mm of rain since Sunday saw the nearby River Ure burst its banks. It left large parts of the track and buildings flooded, with no prospect of the North Yorkshire racecourse being able to salvage its season-ending fixture.

Clerk of the course James Hutchinson said: “In terms of damage, the track will recover and the water will dry way, but we will need to go through the buildings.

“There may be some carpets that need to be replaced or dried out, but hopefully the buildings will dry out okay.

“The main bar that we refurbished last year is a bit wet and the sofas are rather damp but hopefully they will dry out. If not, we are obviously insured. In the past, it’s taken four days to a week to really clear.”

An early morning inspection today will determine prospects for jumps action at Worcester tomorrow.

ANTE-POST Derby favourite Dawn Approach features among 36 remaining entries for the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket on October 13.

The unbeaten Jim Bolger-trained colt took his perfect record to five with an impressive success at the Curragh in the Vincent O’Brien Stakes.

Bolger, triumphant in four of the last six runnings of the race, has also left in promising maiden victor Trading Leather as well as Leitir Mor.