DONCASTER RACECOURSE: All set for our flat finale

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THE Racing Post Trophy is always a fantastic meeting, and one that we expect big things from, having seen Camelot win the biggest race of the three-day fixture here last year.

With conditions soft, this year’s race saw challenging ground for runners, with cloudy skies and a low temperature that had the distinct feeling of the start of winter - and with it, the National Hunt season, which gets underway here in just under a month.

Friday provided some great action to whet punters’ appetite for our Saturday line up. The big race of Friday’s meeting, the Class Two Racing Post SIS Betting Shop Manage of the Year Handicap, saw 20/1 shot Thunderball race ahead of the competition to scoop victory ahead of Ancient Cross at 10/1, Jonny Mudball at 12/1 and favourite Khubala, who crossed the line in fourth.

On Saturday we saw smaller, though no less competitive fields of runners. The first race saw 11 runners take to the course, with 5/1 odds Rocky Reef winning over seven furlongs.

With 21 runners in the second race, the favourite, Proofreader, could only manage to finish 14th, with the winner Party Line at 12/1 trained by Mark Johnston putting in a strong performance to beat Art Scholar at 10/1 and Fulgar at 8/1.

Favourite Jack Dexter put in a good run in the third race to take victory over a 21-strong field running over five furlongs. And in the big race, the group one Racing Post Trophy for two-year old colts and fillies, seven top class horses took to the stalls. Kingsbarns, the favourite at odds of 15/8, led from one furlong out and stayed on well to deliver the goods for trainer Aiden O’Brien. Van Der Neer, at 5/1, finished second, with well-backed Irish horse Steeler – with Kieren Fallon aboard – pipped to the post, crossing the line in third.

It was a fantastic showdown, and a great highlight to the meeting, which always proves popular with punters.

Our next raceday is the BETFRED November Handicap on Saturday, November 10. It is the last flat meeting in our racing calendar, so we’re expecting a busy day at Town Moor. For more information about this, or any other forthcoming racedays at Doncaster Racecourse, or to buy tickets, go to www.doncaster-racecourse.co.uk or call 01302 511 918.