WHAT a pasting the bookies took at Sandown on Wednesday!

Every winner was well backed and if we’d been playing by Queensberry rules the layers towels would have been thrown-in long before Mystic Meg (7-2 to 9-4) lagged up in the last.

Silvestre de Sousa punched home a treble for punters here and was in irresistible form.

SDS is harder to knock down than a Weeble when he’s in this sort of mood and the ride he produced to get Knight Errant (11-2 to 4-1) home in the 1m2f handicap was right out the top drawer.

He was nailed to the inside rail throughout, refused to let the horse drop away when he faltered at the two-pole, and pretty much piggy-backed him up the hill to get home in front.

Who knows why the bionic Brazilian hasn’t got a top job – he appears as fashionable as a pair bell-bottoms with most premier league trainers – but there’s no better rider of an ordinary horse.

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It was good to see Owen Burrows win the 1m Listed event with Wadilsafa (4-5 to 4-6) on this card.

Owen’s had the sort of miserable season that only Morrissey would be able to enjoy, but this colt has managed to keep improving and is more than capable of grabbing a Group race on quick ground.

Talking of smart prospects, Ed Vaughan’s Magic J (11-2 to 7-4) looked a two-year-old to follow when landing a gamble at Yarmouth on Tuesday.

The autumn is full of chat about youngsters who can lap pigeons and this $925,000 purchase more than lived up to his rave reviews.

Saturday Stonker

YOUNG RASCAL (2.20 Newbury) looked a classy prospect in the spring and can make up for lost time by winning this Arc trial.

Vaughan makes less noise than a church mouse in hush-puppies, but was keen to talk about Magic J, saying:

“We’ve had some nice horses, but I think this fellow is in a different league.

“It is the most excited about a horse I’ve ever been in my life.”

Backers didn’t have it all their own way though, there were a few misplaced punts including a crazy move for the Richard Phillips trained Lady Of Authority (25-1 to 3-1) at Kempton on Monday night.

This plunge was always likely to end in tears – Phillips saddles as many winners as The Queen eats kebabs – and they’re still looking for the filly now.

It was the same story with Mark Johnston’s Eesha Lovely (5-1 to 5-2), who was sledge-hammered before the 1m novice event at Kempton on Wednesday.

Despite the heavy support she lumbered out the stalls last and then went backwards. This filly is either green or useless and her fan club certainly lost a few members here!

William Haggas has shown more patience than Job with his smart colt Young Rascal who hasn’t been sighted since finishing mid-division when third favourite for the Derby.

The wraps finally come off him at Newbury today (2.20) and he must have every chance in receipt of weight from older rivals.

Young Rascal loved this track when bolting-up over C&D in April and has always been held in the highest regard by his super-shrewd connections.

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