A Marvel-lous Leger winner

William Buick celebrates with horse Masked Marvel, after winning the race for the second consecutive year. Also pictured is stable hand Amir Maik Nazer. Picture: Liz Mockler D9921LM
William Buick celebrates with horse Masked Marvel, after winning the race for the second consecutive year. Also pictured is stable hand Amir Maik Nazer. Picture: Liz Mockler D9921LM

TOWN Moor’s showpiece race proved one of the most thrilling of the year as Masked Marvel set a new course record to triumph in the 235th running of the St Leger.

A late surge took the 15/2 William Buick mount clear to win the final Flat racing Classic of the year by three lengths.

With a frenetic pace set, runners moved in and out of contention throughout.

But Masked Marvel found a turn of heel in the closing stages to seal the victory, a second straight Leger win for jockey Buick and a third in five years for trainer John Gosden.

The record breaking run was all the more special as it was against a fierce headwind down the final half mile.

Pre-race favourite Sea Moon struggled with the early pace and a late charge could only secure third place.

Brown Panther, owned by Manchester United striker Michael Owen, finished second.

Gosden claimed he always knew Masked Marvel would be a Leger winner.

He said: “From the day I saw him as a yearling I thought he was a Leger type.

“He was a powerful little guy even then and he’s got a great pedigree for the job.

“He’s got the pace to drop back in trip, too.

“He’s a proper horse.”