Shadwell-owned Minzaal lands Sprint Cup for his biggest career prize

Jim Crawley steers the impressive colt home at Haydock Park

Minzaal, ridden by jockey Jim Crowley, wins the Sprint Cup at Haydock Park on September 3, 2022. PA
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Minzaal bagged his first Group 1 prize when landing the Sprint Cup at Haydock Park on Saturday.

The Mehmas colt in the silks of Shadwell, whose late owner Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid set up Owen Burrows as a private trainer in 2016, powered home under Jim Crawley to an easy victory over the six-furlong trip.

The 140,000 guineas purchase travelled well and hit the front a furlong from home to win from Emaraaty Ana in the silks of Dubai’s Sheikh Mohammed Obaid by three and-three-quarter lengths.

Rohaan was a further short head behind in third while Godolphin’s Naval Crown finished second last in the 12-runner field.

“He deserved that. He's a remarkable horse because he's so laid-back,” Crawley said of the four-year-old.

Jockey Jim Crowley celebrates winning the Sprint Cup with horse Minzaal. PA

“The bell goes and he's like a boxer, he just wakes up. He's got a great temperament and it's lovely to make him a Group 1 winner.

“The race went smoothly. He has been a bit slow away in the past, which might have cost him a couple of races, but he jumped nicely and they went a nice pace.

“He was always travelling comfortably and, as soon as he got the split, he was away and gone. He's equally effective on good to soft as he is fast ground. The main aim is probably Champions Day now.”

Minzaal won the Gimcrack before finishing third in the Middle Park, but he suffered a setback turning three and did not appear until late last term.

He was third at the highest level in the British Champions Sprint Stakes, but his camp anticipated him to be better at four.

He was building on his most recent efforts - a win in Newbury's Hackwood Stakes and second in the Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest – to take his form to a new level when thumping his Haydock rivals.

“I can't really put it into words, all credit to the team back home,” Burrows said.

“They've worked hard and we seem to be able to rock up on these Saturdays and get the job done, which is amazing.

“We don't have a lot of horses to run and big winners on a Saturday are hard to come by, but he deserved it. He was knocking on the door at two, and had an interrupted time last year. He ran a big race in France last time and that was a big performance there.

“He's a pleasure to deal with and has a temperament to die for. For a sprinter, he's so laid-back about life.”

Updated: September 03, 2022, 3:39 PM