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Ellison eyeing big-race double with Onesmoothoperator

Ellison eyeing big-race double with Onesmoothoperator
Ellison eyeing big-race double with Onesmoothoperator

Onesmoothoperator is likely to head straight for the Sky Bet Ebor after fulfilling a lifelong ambition for trainer Brian Ellison by landing Saturday’s Northumberland Plate.

Born in Newcastle on Plate day in 1952, proud Geordie Ellison – who celebrated his 72nd birthday on Friday – has never hidden his burning desire to land a race known to the locals as the ‘Pitmen’s Derby’.

Having come close with runner-up Seamour eight years ago, the Norton-based trainer finally struck gold in the Gosforth Park feature last weekend as Onesmoothoperator cruised to an emphatic victory and sparked emotional scenes in the winner’s enclosure.

“It was a great day, wasn’t it? The owner lives five minutes from the course, so we went there and had a barbeque and had a good night,” said Ellison.

“On the day it didn’t really sink in, you always think it’s not going to happen, don’t you? But he was very impressive.”

As a North Yorkshire trainer, the Ebor is also high up on Ellison’s list of priorities.

The trainer saddled Moyenne Corniche to win the prestigious York handicap in 2011 and considers Onesmoothoperator an ideal candidate as he looks to double his tally on August 24.

Connor Beasley and Onesmoothoperator winning the Northumberland Plate
Connor Beasley and Onesmoothoperator winning the Northumberland Plate (Steve Welsh/PA)

“We’ll look at the Ebor and I think that will probably be his next run,” Ellison added.

“It would be nice to win it again and it’s obviously a good money race now (worth £500,000).

“We’ve found out he wants a bit more time between races, so we probably won’t run again before York.”

Ellison also ran the high-class Tashkhan in the Northumberland Plate, with the six-year-old weakening out of contention after forcing the early gallop.

However, given he had been off the track since finishing third in the Prix Royal-Oak at ParisLongchamp in October, the trainer is not giving up on his high-class stayer just yet.

He said: “Tashkhan has come out of it well, he’ll be in the Ebor and maybe the Lonsdale Cup as well.

“I looked at him in the paddock the other day and I just thought he looked like he might need the run, whereas the other fella was spot-on.

“Wherever it’s soft ground, that’s where he’ll go.”

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