Shantaram slogs home
Shantaram showed plenty of stamina to land the Group 3 Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket for the in-form John Gosden yard.
The potential Ladbrokes St Leger hope stayed on far too strongly for Naseem Alyasmeen at the end of a taxing 13 furlongs with doubts about him handling the soft ground seemingly put to bed.
Good Morning Star set a sedate pace under Joe Fanning and the surprise winner of the Cheshire Oaks was still in front three furlongs from home with Yazdi poised to make his challenge.
But in behind William Buick still had plenty of horse under him and Shantaram responded well when asked to go to the front.
The 9/4 shot was challenged by Mick Channon's outsider a furlong from home and a shock looked to be on the cards, but Shantaram found more in the closing stages to score by three-and-a-quarter lengths.
Gosden said of Shantaram: "I underdid him for his last race and the ground was very loose. He has a lovely action and didn't like that but he's improved a lot and I would have been disappointed had he not won today. He's in the Voltigeur and will also be put in the Leger and he'll go in those directions. He needs racing so we'll probably go to York."
The trainer could take Camelot on with three horses in the final Classic, adding: "Someone's got to surround the good horse! Obviously Michelangelo's a nice horse, as is this one and Thought Worthy. They're all legitimate contenders, they're in different ownership and it's entirely their decision what they want to do but I could certainly work towards that end (running all three)."
Buick added: "That was probably the first time the penny has dropped for him. He did everything properly today and is a good horse that just needed loads of time. He travels well and he can also pick up but he stays very well too."
Sky Bet and the sponsors both make Shantaram a 14-1 chance for the Ladbrokes St Leger.
Mick Channon said of the runner-up: "It was a great run and she's improving all the time. Martin (Harley) said she will go to war for you. She has never run a bad race and is full of guts. She has really come to herself."
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