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Tower Of London flies up late

Aidan O’Brien’s Tower of London (IRE) rallied from the back of the pack to land the fifth edition of the US$2.5 million Longines Red Sea Turf Handicap at Riyadh on Saturday.

Tower of London wins under a driving ride by Ryan Moore, photo Liesl King

Settling near the back through the early parts of the race, jockey Ryan Moore had to navigate a path into the clear on the son of Galileo after spinning off the final of three bends, eventually finding his best stride in the final 200m and hitting the finish line in a time of 3:04.43.

Richard Kingscote was aboard Enemy (GB), who was second for the second consecutive year in the stamina-sapping affair. A thriller of a race, indeed, it was another three-quarters of a length back to top-weight Giavellotto (IRE) in third with Oisin Murphy in the saddle.

The victory was a first on The Saudi Cup card for iconic Irish conditioner O’Brien, who had prepared the colt for the Coolmore ownership syndicate of Derrick Smith, Mrs John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Westerberg.

Quotes

Ryan Moore, jockey, Tower Of London, 1st: "He’s a lightly raced horse. He’s from a very good family, a brother to Capri and the family have done well for the yard. He’d been working well, they always held him in high regard. We had to be patient and a few horses were dropping back. We eventually got out and he got there at the end. Today was the first time he was able to run on a flat track on quick ground and Aidan has had a lot of faith."

MV Magnier, ownership representative: "In fairness to Aidan he was quite confident coming out here and Ryan said he was going to take his time. He’s pretty cool, relaxed and nothing fazes him. I haven’t spoken to Aidan yet but I’d say the chances are he could go for Dubai Gold Cup but it’ll be up to Aidan and the lads. I’ve been here for the past few days, it’s remarkable the welcome we’ve got and the people have been brilliant."

Oisin Murphy, jockey, Giavellotto, 3rd: "Brilliant run. We took our time out the back and the speed was on. I was following Ryan [Moore on Tower Of London] turning in and we quickened really well. At the furlong [200m] I thought we might have had it, but it was a great effort, especially carrying top-weight."

Christophe Soumillon, Al Nayyir, 4th: "He stayed on well but I couldn’t get to the front three."

Luis Saez, First Minister, 6th: "He finished off well. There was a good pace to aim at and he did his best."

William Buick, Big Call, 7th: "We had a good spot but that was it."

Joao Moreira, Breakup, 9th: "Unfortunately he was not able to get some cover. I think it was too wide and I had to make it too hard. He tried hard but unfortunately he was not able to finish on the board."

Cristian Demuro, Iron Barows, 12th: "The ground was a little bit hard for him. He did not show his action today. He needs softer ground."

Marco Ghiani, Roberto Escobarr, 13th: "He jumped well, the plan was to go to the front but he wasn’t quick enough, the ground was quite fast and we ran out of petrol."

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