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Mill Stream digs deep to take Duke of York honours

Mill Stream just got up on the line to land a thrilling renewal of the 1895 Duke of York Clipper Stakes at York.

Ridden by William Buick and trained by Jane Chapple-Hyam, Mill Stream was sent off the 4-1 joint favourite for the Group Two affair but had to battle hard in a four-way fight to the line.

Mill Stream eventually edged ahead of Shouldvebeenaring by a nose, with a photo needed to separate the pair.

Diligent Harry is still looking for a first victory on turf as he was beaten into third by a neck, with Washington Heights a further neck adrift in fourth.

Mill Stream is now is 8-1 favourite from 14-1 with Coral for the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot and Chapple-Hyam would be eager to tackle that race, if owner Peter Harris agrees.

She said: “He’s a tough, brave horse and he’s come on a lot since (finishing second in) the Abernant but he’s only just won.

“I think he’s pretty versatile, he goes on any ground. It was soft when he won in France last year twice but quick in the Abernant.

“I’d like to go to Ascot on the Saturday (Jubilee) but I’ll see what Mr Harris wants to do.

“Mr Harris has landed me with some nice horses and I’m in a lucky position, I’ve got 18 for him so it’s nice to win a big race for him and we’ve got Rolica, the filly, to look forward to and some colts coming through.

“I think he’s good enough to run in the Jubilee, I’d like to see the splits as it’s on the slow side of good today but he’s against older horses.

“Mr Harris is very easy to deal with, he comes up every Saturday morning. He was out of the game for 15 years but now he’s in big. His daughter Alison has her horses with Mr (James) Fanshawe.”

Tom Marquand and Tiber Flow appeared to escape any serious injury when they came down with a couple of furlongs still to run.

Chapple-Hyam added: “I wasn’t sure if we’d won and I appreciate they couldn’t show the replay because of the faller but thankfully Tom and the horse look OK.”

Buick was more than satisfied with the winner’s performance and said: “I got carried left a little bit but he really put his head out and I was delighted he got the verdict.

“He’s been knocking on the door a few times, hopefully this is his year as three-year-olds can struggle when sprinting, he could have a big year ahead of him.”

Tim Palin, racing manager for Shouldvebeenaring’s owners Middleham Park Racing, was relieved to see the grey bounce back from a disappointing run when favourite for the Abernant Stakes at Newmarket.

He said: “Mill Stream was a worthy winner on the day, it was obviously close in the photo, and we’re just delighted with how our ran because we couldn’t really explain what happened last time – maybe there was a slightly bounce factor going into the Abernant from the Lady Wulfruna (at Wolverhampton).

“We’ve got our horse back, a horse who was running well in Group Ones at the backend of last year in the Haydock Sprint Cup and the Prix da la Foret, and we’ll continue to ply our trade in Group Ones and Group Twos.

“He’s in a Group Three over seven furlongs at ParisLongchamp a week on Sunday and he’s also in the Group Two Greenlands Stakes at the Curragh a week on Saturday, so he could go into one of those.

“He’s in both sprint races at Royal Ascot and probably him playing at home is the Prix Maurice de Gheest and the Haydock Sprint Cup, so I would say those would be his two Derbys, if you can use that term for a sprinter.”

Diligent Harry’s trainer, Clive Cox, could look to Royal Ascot with his runner, though a drop back from six furlongs is likely.

He said: “I’m very proud, it was a big run. I thought we’d done our fighting there and then the first and second came at us very late in the day.

“I’m very pleased he’s in a good place and Richard (Kingscote) gave him a super ride, I couldn’t be more happy bar winning.

“He’s in the shorter race at Royal Ascot (King Charles III Stakes) as I think a stiff five furlongs is more in our favour at the track than stretching him out over a stiff six.”

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