Carroll takes track title in style with treble in the finale.
Byline: Brighton Bruce Jackson
TONY CARROLL has rewarded his supporters over the years at the seaside course, but took it to new levels this year with a first trainers' title courtesy of a 642.5-1 treble.
Past winner Gary Moore led into the last day, but Carroll hoisted the treble to fly past and onto 11 winners on the rollercoaster course this season, taking his five-year score to 25 at a handsome profit of over 50 points to level stakes.
"I have been lucky here over the years and I think George [Downing] rides it very well which has helped.
"There are nice races here for the type of horses I have - they cater for them," said Carroll, who is rapidly closing on last year's best of 58 Flat winners.
"I have plenty of horses left to run and on the all-weather this winter," he added.
Admirable Art kicked off the treble in the first division of the mile handicap, sponsored by Brighton & Hove Albion Supporting AITC, leading the raft of frontrunning winners.
Owner Dudley Morgan was rewarded for literally going the extra mile to get Adam Kirby to ride his six-year-old as he explained.
"I think Adam is the key to this horse and I drive Adam a lot. I persuaded him to come for the ride and drove him down and now have to drive him back to Chelmsford for his evening rides."
Downing took over the steering on the other two Carroll winners - Evanescent in the 7f handicap and Suni Dancer in the 6f handicap.
That leaves Downing 11 short of riding out his claim in a season where he has bettered last year's total of 20 by five.
Sunrise wins the sundowner John Gallagher was feeling the pressure with Bahamian Sunrise after bypassing a PS10,000 race at Bath the day before running in the 51/2f handicap for half the money.
"I just thought he had a much better chance of winning this and his owner said I'd better be right," said Gallagher, a past top trainer at the track and with a happy knack of popping up with the last winner on a card.
Whitecrest's old legs could never keep up with the winner's blistering pace and the eight-year-old finished seventh on his 100th career start. Brighton marked the occasion with a bottle of champagne for his connections.
Football supporting racing Brighton & Hove Albion football club works closely with the racecourse and the latest sponsorship tie-up brought south-coast legend Guy Butters to the presentation platform for their races.
The former Tottenham, Portsmouth, Gillingham and Brighton centre-half is a host in the hospitality at the Amex Stadium down the road and forecast Brighton would "at least make the playoffs again".
He added: "I have been in the owners and trainers all afternoon and haven't backed a winner - these racing people are very cagey aren't they? Us footballers would say if we fancied a team to win."
Thought for the day Jim Crowley made it 17 winners at the track as part of his title-winning year with a last-day double. While he has ridden more winners on the all-weather tracks at Chelmsford, Lingfield and Kempton, this course is far and away his most productive on the turf.