Eldar Eldarov got his deserved Group 1, and a first Classic for jockey David Egan, as they showed that stamina was their game by winning the final Classic of the season, the 2022 Cazoo St Leger at Doncaster Racecourse.
The Grand Prix de Paris fourth, and Queen’s Vase winner at Royal Ascot over the same trip as the St Leger, swept by the field late on to give the trainer Roger Varian a second win in the race, after Kingston Hill in 2014. Early on, French Claim was kept wide by Danny Tudhope, and with the rest of field on the rail at a good pace, there was not much order change. The eventual winner was tracking the runs of hot favourite New London and the well-fancied Haskoy, and turning into the straight, the dash for home was on.
Despite receiving a bump in the home straight, Egan’s mount was quickly back to being balanced on the sprint for home, and his stamina came to bear, wearing down Haskoy, New London, Hoo Ya Mal and Giavellotto, coming home at odds of 9-2. 2 furlongs out, just before Eldar Eldarov began wearing down his opponents, there was significant interference caused by Haskoy, leaning into Giavellotto, causing Neil Callan to have to snatch up his mount and switch. As a result of this, a Stewards’ Inquiry decided that Haskoy be demoted to fourth, having originally been placed second. New London, the 11-8 favourite, was promoted to second, somewhat consolation for the Appleby / Godolphin / Buick contingent, with Giavellotto running a blinder to be placed third, especially having been interfered with so badly.
After the race David Egan was quoted by the Racing Post as saying “That was for him (Jack de Bromhead, who was killed in a freak fall last weekend in Ireland).”
“I always thought he (Eldar Eldarov) would relish a bit of ease in the ground and that’s exactly what he’s done. I was an apprentice with Roger (Varian, trainer) at the age of 16 so to win a Classic for him is so special. These Classics are fantastic. It was very sad news with the Queen and it’s a week today since the passing of Jack de Bromhead, he was the first person I thought of when we crossed the line. That was for him.”
By Jack and Tom Williams
Photos by JTW Equine Images