Notnowcato Eclipses Rivals at Sandown

Notnowcato captured his third group I victory, this time at the expense of both Vodafone Derby (Eng-I) victor Authorized and champion George Washington, when rolling to a 1 1/2-length win in the $880,000 Coral-Eclipse Stakes (Eng-I) at Sandown Park on Saturday.

Most of the pre-race attention focused on the match up between Authorized and George Washington. Authorized,  making his first start since his impressive victory in the Vodafone Derby, was hammered down to 4-7 favoritism by bettors. George Washington went off as the 4-1 second choice, based upon his close fourth-place finish in the Queen Anne Stakes (Eng-I) at Royal Ascot last month. 

Once again overlooked by the bettors, Sir Michael Stoute’s Notnowcato went off at generous 7-1 odds. Jockey Ryan Moore walked the course earlier in the afternoon and discovered that the course was drying out faster along the outside hedge, so he made the decision to move his mount to the far outside when the field entered the home straight.

The rest of the field remained on the inside rail, with Authorized and George Washington taking over from pacemaker Champery and fighting it out to the wire.  Unbeknownst to that pair, Moore had Notnowcato under a full head of steam on the far outside, and the 5-year-old son of Inchinor stormed home to an impressive victory.

Authorized held on for second by a head over George Washington. Time for the ten furlongs was 2:05.85 over a course rated good to soft.

Stoute had planned to walk the course with Moore before the race, but got stuck in traffic.  The champion trainer told reporters after the race, “Ryan is back among the winners after he was out through injury. That was a good bit of professionalism and he deserves a lot of credit.”

"We just felt a length off the stands side was quicker," Moore said. "This fellow is so honest and gives you everything. He's a brave, honest horse and has not got the credit he deserves."

Notnowcato is owned by Anthony and David de Rothschild.

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