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Jack Channon's confidence in Caernarfon pays off

Jack Channon was quick to admit he had "effed up" after Classic-placed Caernarfon landed her first win since 2022 in the Listed Pipalong Stakes at Pontefract on Tuesday.

He was rueing the Oaks third's wasted 12 months over middle-distances following an instant return to winning ways dropped back to a mile.

"That's very satisfying seeing as I've obviously effed up with her for the last year," the trainer said after the four-year-old scored by three-quarters of a length under Tom Marquand.

"We took a punt in the Oaks last year and she obviously ran very well. That was burnt in the memory and since that day we've thought a mile and half and a mile and a quarter was her trip. But, when you look back, she'd won over a mile in the Montrose Stakes and finished fourth in the 1,000 Guineas.

"She doesn't lack speed and I feel I'm in decent company because the Gosdens did it with Running Lion, who's taken off again since she was dropped back to a mile. It's sometimes easy to get hoodwinked into thinking they need further."

Only one rival started at a longer price than 14-1 shot Caernarfon here, but Channon said: "On all form, I couldn't have her beat. In a handicap she'd have been giving them 20lb. I knew how good she was – her work last week was exceptional."

Mighty off mark

Big-money buy Mighty Bandit got off the mark at the fifth attempt for his new owners when landing the 1m2f maiden for trainer Warren Greatrex.

The four-year-old, who was bought for €420,000 out of Gordon Elliott's yard at the Caldwell dispersal sale in February, stayed on well to score by half a length from Kildare Legend.

Winning rider Eddy Greatrex, riding his sixth winner in the last 11 days, said: "I'm delighted for the horse as he tries very hard. He came with a big price tag and I think he could go for some big handicaps in the future." 

The jockey, 26, who returned to the saddle in April having quit due to injury in 2021, said of his good run of form: "I can't complain. I'm getting lots of opportunities and plenty of help from people. I'm very good physically and I'm delighted I came back."

 

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