Second Step One Step Ahead

2nd May 2015

Second Step edged out hot favourite Telescope to claim Group Two glory in the Dunaden at Overbury Jockey Club Stakes at Newmarket. The Sir Michael Stoute-trained Telescope placed at the highest level on more than one occasion last term - including when second in the King George to Taghrooda - and was sent off the 8-13 favourite to land this 12-furlong heat. 

All appeared to be going to plan as outsider Odeon set the early gallop with Telescope tucked in behind in third of the four-runner field, taking a keen hold. As Odeon began to toil, Pether's Moon made his bid but Ryan Moore opted to hold onto Telescope no longer, letting him stride to the front in impressive style with two furlongs to run.

However, Second Step (7-1) followed him through and chased him down through the final furlong to eventually edge out the market leader by a head for trainer Luca Cumani and jockey Andrea Atzeni. The pair finished well clear of Pether's Moon, with Odeon last of four.

A triumphant Atzeni said: "He was always going to end up being a Group horse this year. When Ryan quickened he took two lengths out of me, but when I hit the rising ground I was always going to get there in the end.

"We went a nice gallop - Mr Cumani's always improve with age."Cumani said: "I wouldn't have considered this race if there had been an easier option, but there wasn't one."

I thought Andrea rode him with confidence, and that if the others picked each other off the pieces may come together in the end. "We'll have to see, but maybe (we will look at) something like the Hardwicke Stakes (at Royal Ascot). It's never a good idea to make plans on the spur of the moment though so we will see."

Asked about a potential Melbourne Cup bid, Cumani added: "The Melbourne Cup could be a possibility, but it remains to be seen if he'll get two miles and it's a long way away."

Second Step was owned and bred by Craig Bennett's Merry Fox Stud, his dam was bought by Badgers Bloodstock at Tattersalls for 190,000 gns.

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