Photography by Susan Ford

Bibury Cup Day is eagerly anticipated by many as part of the Salisbury calendar, and this year was on June 26. The main race has been run at the Netherhampton track since 1899.

The afternoon card opened with an impressive five length win from Adam Kirby, riding Clive Cox-trained debutant Positive in the 7-furlong maiden. Positive is half-sister to miler Zonderland, also trained by Cox and won the Sovereign Stakes, Salisbury’s richest race in 2016.

Positive strides for victory

For the Inspire Foundation Veteran’s Handicap, a photo finish put trainer Charlie Wallis and jockey Joshua Bryan victorious with Zac Brown, staying on strongly to beat favourite Harry Hurricane by a head.

Mick Channon’s Milltown Star won the 6-furlong Hunt Forest Group & John Deere Auction Stakes under Franny Norton.

Marcus Tregoning’s Power Of Darkness was slowest out of the stalls in the 1-mile Molson Coors Handicap, but made headway in the hands of Andrea Atzeni and kept on well to take the race title for the second year running. Power of Darkness is now 3 from 3 at Salisbury and the next stop for the four-year-old is the Totesport Mile at Glorious Goodwood.

Desert Icon justified favouritism in the feature race of the day, £22,500 Whitsbury Manor Stud Bibury Cup Handicap Stakes for Newmarket trainer William Haggas, and in-form jockey Ryan Moore. A special mention has to go to Eve Johnson Houghton’s Kiefer closing on the winner in the finish and  pipped at the post by a neck.

Desert Icon, deserts his rivals

Rod Millman’s previous course and distance winner Master Grey won at odds of 9-2, the mount of Kieran O’Neill, in the longest race of the day, 1 mile 6-furlong H S Lester Memorial Handicap.

The afternoon ended with Gifts of Gold’s comfortable win in the Radcliffe & Co 60th Anniversary British EBF Maiden Stakes under Thomas Greatrex for Saeed bin Suroor, giving Godolphin, 2018 top owners at the course, their first Salisbury win of the season.

Salisbury next meeting is on Saturday, July 13 for Ladies’ Evening with post-racing entertainment by the We Love Little Mix tribute band. Gates open 3pm. Tickets:


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