August 27th 2018

Nagano Gold[17876]

In this round up, it’s probably best that we headline with NAGANO GOLD’s stunning victory in the Listed Prix Hubert Baguenault de Puchesse in July. The four year old son of Sixties Icon routed a talented field on only his fourth career start and, whilst we could wax lyrical about the performance, it’s best watched with your own eyes:

NAGANO GOLD – 3,500gns F; 8th foal; half-brother to UAE 1m2f-1m3f winner Jamr (inc AW/Group 3; RPR 109), Belgian 1m2f winner Virginia’s Choice & Greek 7f-1m2f winner Magkiora; dam unraced half-sister to German Listed winners Night Sun (7f) & Nevermore (1m2f).

As for matters on the domestic front, Sixties Icon continues to enjoy success on the track:


Sunday saw a double for Norman Court Stud’s Sixties Icon in testing conditions at Goodwood.

CAN CAN SIXTY TWO shone in the gloom as a return to the soft ground that she relished when winning to great effect at Salisbury at the start of the season, saw her take the Class 3 seller over eleven furlongs.

With Charlie Bishop up, the front running tactics meant that her opposition just couldn’t catch the three year old daughter of Sixties Icon who hosed up by eleven lengths in a victory that delighted Mick Channon.

“This was only a seller but I expect her to go in again as the autumn ground will give her plenty of opportunities to showcase her liking for a bit of dig in the ground.

“Sixties Icon’s offspring go in all types of conditions but they are also very versatile and because they are often very economical in their actions, soft groung gives ours an extra string to their bows. That’s the evidence our eyes see although Charlie didn’t have to win by 11 lengths!”

CAN CAN SIXTY TWO: 10th foal; sister to winners Ingleby Mackenzie (1m3f/1m4f; RPR 74) and Sojoum (Belgium 11.5f), half-sister to 3 winners inc Fork Handles (6f 2yo/1m2f; 98) and Think (8.4f; 52); dam 7f-1m winner (85) half-sister to 1m Listed winner You Know The Rules.

Indeed, in the Class 3 mile and a half handicap for three year olds and upwards, another Sixties Icon filly, FANNIE BY GASLIGHT took the valuable fifteen thousand pound first prize in the colours of Aston Bloodstock by another considerable margin – this time eight lengths.

Franny Norton was up and it really was a front running ride that left the others very little chance as, having got a breather into FANNIE down the hill, Franny punched her out to record a facile victory that left him somewhat surprised considering the company she took apart.

“Franny just shrugged when he came in because this represented a massive step up for the filly,” explained Mick.

“She’s destroyed a field of fillies rated in the high 80’s and low 90’s. She’s only raced on fast ground but we knew she’d like the conditions. That said, off of bottom weight and only rated 68, I guess people were justified in thinking this was a flight of fancy.

“She’s always had a great attitude though. She’s a three year old who only started racing this year and she’s backed up her previous victory on firm ground at Salisbury on her handicap debut and now shown she’s improved for a further step up in trip and that she relished the ground.

“It all bodes well for another of our fillies from the stud who may well have a good autumn.”

FANNIE BY GASLIGHT: First foal; dam 8.6f AW winner (RPR 64), half-sister to 1m-1m4f winner Thaqaffa out of maiden half-sister to 7f 2yo Group 3 winner Icicle and 5f Listed winner Crucial., is granddaughter of 7f 2yo winner.


A four year old on the ascent and a victory showcasing the talent of William Harrison-Allan’s HATS OFF TO LARRY as the son of Sixties Icon romped home at Windsor under the in-form Scott McCullagh.

Having really come in to his own this year after previous victories at Beverley and Windsor, HATS OFF TO LARRY underlined his blossoming talent in the Class 4 mile and a quarter affair for four year olds and upward in eyecatching style.

Indeed, having been forced to go wide around the bend, he was caught flat footed as they straightened up and kicked for home up ahead and, although stone last at that point, a cool ride from McCullagh saw him produce his mount in the closing stages, storming to the front in the final half furlong to leave trainer Mick Channon beaming.

“That was a super effort and all credit to the horse. He’s comeon a ton this year and who knows what lies in store? He’s got a bit of everything – size scope and a great attitude which he’s shown since first getting his head in front at Beverley.

“He’s truly going the right way now and has bags of potential. It wouldn’t surprise me if he went on to be a bright prospect this winter as a jumper. He’s an absolute smasher who could well go chasing later on.”

HATS OFF TO LARRY – First foal; dam unraced half-sister to winners Highland Quaich (7f AW), Highland River (1m and 1m3f AW/2m3f hurdle and 2m5f chase) and Highland Harvest (multiple 5f-1m), is granddaughter of 1m winner.


He’s only been in the UK a short time but apprentice Scott McCullagh enjoyed two more winners on Thursday and Saturday, showcasing his talents under two sorts ideally suited to strike in the formative months of a jockey’s education in England.

There wasn’t much you could say about ICONIC BELLE’s latest victory at Epsom on Thursday 2nd August – it was merely a case of ‘more of the same’ as the Sweet Partnership’s four year old daughter of Sixties Icon made it three wins and a place in her last four outings under McCullagh when taking the Apprentice handicap at the Esher venue.

The mile and a quarter Class 5 event for four year olds and upwards saw ICONIC BELLE jump smartly and, although she excels at front running, McCullagh was smart enough to track The Lord’s Walk who was intent on making it.

That he did until a quarter of a mile from home when ICONIC BELLE was asked to extend and she did so in fine style. Clearly the pace was honest but not excessive as the front two were never bothered by any of their five pursuers, with the West Ilsley filly winning by a comfortable half length to record her fourth win of the campaign.

ICONIC BELLE – Fourth foal; sister to 7f-1m4f winner Chilworth Bells (inc Fibresand; RPR 79), half-sister to 6f 2yo selling; 57/2m-2m4f hurdle winner Ding Ding and 2m hurdle winner Marmont; dam last in 1m2f/1m4f maidens (39), out of 1m2f/1m6f winner

Two days later in the finale of Glorious Goodwood, the valuable Class 3 Qatar Apprentice Handicap went the way of the ever improving THE NIGHT PORTER who recorded his third victory in his debut season as a three year old in a style completely opposite to that of ICONIC BELLE.

The son of Sixties Icon was stone last for much of it as McCullagh took his time before bringing THE NIGHT PORTER home in thrilling and assured style, sweeping past all of his eleven opponents in the manner of a horse with a bright future.

As THE NIGHT PORTER’s owner, Mick Channon was obviously delighted with both horse and jockey.

“That’ll do! Scott is clearly loving life at the minute and without being too much of a grump, he needs to be aware of how much he’s benefitted from having ICONIC BELLE in the form of her life and the fact that THE NIGHT PORTER is a young horse very much going places.

“Hard work is the way forward and if Scott proves to be as progressive as THE NIGHT PORTER he won’t go far wrong. He’s a smashing individual with a great attitude and untapped potential.

“He’s gone up from his mark of 86 on Saturday to 94 now and I can’t see that stopping him. Another two winners from Norman Court Stud and another emerging talent underlining Sixties Icon’s reputation for producing winners.

“I sometimes wonder where we’d be without him as a stallion.”

THE NIGHT PORTER – £600 Y; third living foal; brother to 1m2f winner Kerry Icon (RPR 52); dam multiple 7f winner (inc AW; 72), half-sister Irish 1,000 Guineas/US 1m1f Grade 1 winner Samitar and 6f 2yo Group 3 winner Nijoom Dubai.


SOLESMES scored for the second time in her debut season, taking the six furlong juvenile claimer in the hands of David Egan at Lingfield on Wednesday.

It may have been a modest affair but she travelled well throughout and although she was pressed in the final strides by the fast finishing Capla Gilda, Mick Channon’s homebred daughter of Gregorian did enough.

“She’s done nothing wrong and all she does is please. She’s tough, straightforward and will keep winning little races. This looked an obvious race to go for because she may not be entirely advantaged in nurseries at present and as a first foal of a mare of ours at Norman Court, we need winners on the board, not a pat on the back.”

SOLESMES – 3,000gns F; first foal; dam 7f turf/1m AW winner (RPR 79), half-sister to 1m2f Listed winner Cruck Realta out of 1m2f selling winner, is granddaughter of modest 1m4f/1m5f winner.

In the evening it was another Norman Court homebred, ICONIC BELLE who continued her burgeoning relationship with West Ilsley apprentice Scott McCullagh as the pair made it two wins from three runs together to take the Class 5 mile and a quarter handicap for four year olds and upwards.

It was only a three runner contest but that wasn’t ICONIC BELLE’s fault and in a truly run race, Scott dominated proceedings, setting a generous tempo before stretching his rivals at the three pole.

She was attacked on both sides in the closing stages as first Clenymistra and then Beat By Beat By Beat had their say but it was impressive stuff from both the Sweet Partnership’s four year old and her young jockey as Channon admitted.

“Great stuff and it’s great for both ICONIC BELLE and Scott who has struck up a good rapport with her.

‘This is ICONIC BELLE’s third win of the year now and she’s become very consistent. Another for Sixties Icon and the stud and great for Clive and Keith who had to wait for a while to see her get her head in front.”

ICONIC BELLE – Fourth foal; sister to 7f-1m4f winner Chilworth Bells (inc Fibresand; RPR 79), half-sister to 6f 2yo selling; 57/2m-2m4f hurdle winner Ding Ding and 2m hurdle winner Marmont; dam last in 1m2f/1m4f maidens (39), out of 1m2f/1m6f winner


July 10th saw Dave & Gill Hedley’s homebred CHIKOKO TRAIL deliver at the fifth time of asking under Graham Lee at Pontefract.

It was a game showing as the son of Sixties Icon relished the fast ground to confirm he’s steadily becoming a major force in his grade as his three year old career blossoms after two introductory efforts as a juvenile.

The Class 5 one mile handicap saw CHIKOKO TRAIL emerge as a victor off of a mark of 64 and there’s clearly more to come as he’s only just coming in to his own – he travelled comfortably in midfield before they turned for home and he ran away a ready winner to score by a length and three quarters at odds of 16/1.

Mick Channon was obviously pleased and although the price wouldn’t suggest he’d win so convincingly, he’s the type that the Boss expected to deliver sooner rather than later.

“That was impressive and he’s clearly coming on in leaps and bounds. We got him going at the back end of last year for experience more than anything because he was never a precocious two year old and his two runs were needed to set him up for this year.

“He was fourth on his reappearance in May and ran well in an apprentice hands and heels event at Salisbury last month to finish third. He’s been allowed to enjoy himself and has flourished as a result. Graham got the job done and I reckon there’s a lot more to come this season.”

CHIKOKO TRAIL – 13th foal; brother to winners Shimba Hills (1m-1m2f inc at 2/AW; RPR 78 and 2m hurdle) and Partheon (Czech 6f 2yo), half-brother to four winners inc Bateleur (5f-6f inc at 2; 83) and Foster’s Road (1m2f-2m inc AW; 82); dam placed 1m/1m2f (76)

Yet another homebred, Aston Bloodstock’s FANNIE BY GASLIGHT made her first return to the winner’s enclosure as Silvestre de Sousa brought home the daughter of Sixties Icon on her handicap debut at Salisbury on July 14th.

Having failed to land a blow in maiden company on her previous three starts, FANNIE BY GASLIGHT found the Class 6 mile and a quarter handicap for three year olds far more to her liking and she stormed home off of a rating of 65, coming from last to first to take the race comfortably by three parts of a length.

Mick Channon was pleased that one of his homebreds has come good again.

“Whatever you say about her, you can’t knock her heart. She’s struggled this year but it was a question of getting her a mark and letting her find her feet at her level and she certainly did that nicely. She’s gone up to 69 as a result and it’ll be interesting to see what that has done for her confidence because she clearly relished the drop into that company.”

Fannie By Gaslight – First foal; dam 8.6f AW winner (RPR 64), half-sister to 1m-1m4f winner Thaqaffa out of maiden half-sister to 7f 2yo Group 3 winner Icicle and 5f Listed winner Crucial., is granddaughter of 7f 2yo winner.


Having recorded his first career victory at Beverley two runs ago HATS OFF TO LARRY confirmed the notion that the son of Sixties Icon has become a reliable competitor who is now coming intro his own.

Off of a mark of 73, three pounds higher than his maiden victory, HATS OFF TO LARRY took the Class 4 mile and a quarter contest under Charlie Bishop in convincing fashion, staying on strongly to account for Oh It’s Saucepot and the favourite Bid Adieu to please trainer Mick Channon who has always had a soft spot for William Harrison-Allan’s four year old gelding.

“He’s a lovely sort this with a big frame and he’s always been willing. He was consistent last year and was always thereabouts but having him gelded and getting another winter behind him has seen him come good.

“He looked like a stayer to start with but bringing him back to an extended mile and a mile and a quarter – that looks like his trip because he can grind it out if there’s a decent pace on.

“That was a worry with only two to race against but they went a good clip and that played into his hands.”

HATS OFF TO LARRY – First foal; dam unraced half-sister to winners Highland Quaich (7f AW), Highland River (1m and 1m3f AW/2m3f hurdle and 2m5f chase) and Highland Harvest (multiple 5f-1m), is granddaughter of 1m winner.