sport

Dream finally gets Hunt Cup

Field Of Dream made it third time lucky in the Royal Hunt Cup by taking the lucrative mile handicap at Royal Ascot under Adam Kirby at rewarding odds of 20/1.

Jamie Osborne's seven-year-old finished fourth in the 2012 renewal of the cavalry charge and was sixth last year, staying on strongly as normal.

But things went much smoother for Kirby in the gelding's third attempt at the race as he stormed to victory after finding a gap at just the right time going into the penultimate furlong.

He quickened up smartly to take a couple of lengths out of the field and Kirby was not hard pressed in guiding him to the finishing line nicely clear of Chil The Kite (14/1), who also came from way off the pace.

Godolphin runner Steeler, one of the horses banned from running last season in the Mahmood Al Zarooni doping scandal, took third at 33/1 ahead of The Queen's Sea Shanty at 14/1,

Last year's winner Belgian Bill was among a number of runners to suffer trouble in running while strongly-backed favourite Abseil faded in the closing stages to just miss out on the places.

Kirby said: "I'm chuffed to bits with him. He's been a good horse to me, really, as I won a Bunbury Cup on him and he was unlucky in this race last year.

"He loves it when they go quick, he loves coming there on the bridle and he's done it well really. He's a good horse when it goes right.

"It ended up going perfect. We got loads of cover, it got real tight but I knew when it opened up I could go.

"He's a bit of an old character, but fair play to Jamie Osborne, who told me he'd trained him differently and he was in really good nick - he was spot on."

Osborne added: "I was hopeful. He's ran in the last two Hunt Cups having been to Dubai and had a few runs. By the time we were getting to June we were nearly piecing him back together, rather than training him for a race.

"We decided we'd leave to Dubai out and leave him fresh for this race in the hope we'd get a bit more out of him.

"His work of late has been very good. He's done his job leading Toast Of New York the last couple of weeks. He's a good old stick and at the age of seven maybe we've worked out how to train him! He's in the Bunbury Cup with the penalty, so that could be the one."

"Adam (Kirby) is a genius - in my mind he is one of the best riders there has ever been. I just leave it to Adam - he has ridden the horse plenty of times. I can ready his body language - if he was happy I was happy.

"I only have 20 non two-year-olds so for us to make any sort of an impact is going to be very difficult. Luckily, I have some much better two-year-olds this year - 30 as against a dozen this time last year.

"So things are looking better for the future. A couple of nice horses make all the difference."