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Hannon scoops both Newbury QIPCO Guineas trials

20 Apr 2013

Maureen and Olympic Glory strengthened trainer Richard Hannon's Classic hand with victories in Newbury's QIPCO Guineas trials, though they were nowhere near as impressive as the Newmarket trial winners earlier in the week.

Olympic Glory wins the AON Greenham Stakes at Newbury this afternoon under jockey Richard Hughes. Image courtesy of racingfotos.com.

Everyone suspected that after a quiet year with his three-year-olds in 2012, Richard Hannon would be back with a bang in 2013.

A brilliant win from Toronado, his big QIPCO 2000 Guineas hope, at Newmarket on Thursday and a solid second for Sky Lantern, his main QIPCO 1000 Guineas filly, on Wednesday set the week off in some style for the stable.

This afternoon Olympic Glory took the AON Greenham Stakes, Newbury’s big QIPCO 2000 Guineas trial, while Maureen was a smooth winner of the Dubai Duty Free Stakes, the QIPCO 1000 Guineas trial, to round off a fantastic week for the Hannon team, with all four horses ridden by Richard Hughes.

Neither of today’s winners was especially impressive, though the burly Olympic Glory will clearly improve for the race and Maureen could do nothing more than beat what was put in front of her.

Both big rivals to the Hannon pair seemingly failed to stay.

The previously unbeaten Rosdhu Queen, favourite for the Dubai Duty Free Stakes, attempted to make all, but found the seventh furlong beyond her as Maureen eased through for a three-quarter length victory over Agent Allison.

In the AON Greenham, second-favourite Moohaajim was held up in last place, tracking Olympic Glory throughout.

Always travelling well behind the rousted along Olympic Glory, Moohaajim looked to have the race at his mercy until his stamina ebbed away inside the final furlong and he had to settle for third place.

Olympic Glory, who will head to France for the French 2000 Guineas, responded really well to his jockey’s urgings and beat Sir Patrick Moore by a length.

Hannon said: "He never wins by very far, and he is a very lazy horse. He’s going to be a much better horse when he goes over a mile.

"That will take a bit of weight off him and get him ready for the French Guineas. He is still pretty burly and he’s bound to improve."

Richard Hannon junior, son and assistant to his father, said about Maureen: "We weren’t totally sure she would get seven furlongs as she has loads of speed.

"She looked like she travelled supremely well, she has loads of ability, will improve and we have to take our chance in the Guineas.

"We have Sky Lantern, too, and it’s a shame to run them against each other, but it’s the 1000 Guineas and the one we want to win."