Hamish has too much for Ormonde rivals
The lightly-raced Hamish stamped his class on the tote.co.uk Proud To Support Chester Racecourse Ormonde Stakes.
The William Haggas-trained six-year-old won three times during his debut season in 2019, but made it to the racecourse just once the following year and ran only three times last term.
Making his first competitive appearance since November, Hamish was a 9-2 shot under Tom Marquand, with Ralph Beckett’s high-class mare Albaflora all the rage as the 10-11 favourite.
The blinkered Thunderous took the field along for much of the extended one-mile-five-furlong contest and was still in there pitching rounding the home turn.
But Hamish picked up well in the straight to beat the brave pacesetter by three-quarters of a length.
After travelling well for a long way, Albaflora found disappointingly little after coming under pressure and was ultimately well beaten in fifth place.
Maureen Haggas, assistant to her husband, said: “He’s an absolute star and we love him to bits. He’s done well to win as he’d have needed it a bit and he was a bit fresh.
“We haven’t been on the grass at home as the ground is so firm, so to win first time out with a penalty, he’s done well.”
Hamish holds an entry in the Paddy Power Yorkshire Cup on Friday week, but is more likely to be saved for a potential appearance at Royal Ascot.
“I walked the track earlier and I was thinking it was quick enough for him but it couldn’t be that bad given the rain yesterday, and it looks sure to be quicker at York next week,” Haggas.
“He’ll go to Ascot I imagine for the Hardwicke Stakes, but it all depends on the ground. If it’s firm he won’t go anywhere.
“He was off for a long time with a tendon injury and it was a big team effort to get him back. Every day (racing) could be his last which is the sad thing, as you never know how long they will last when they’ve had those injuries.”