MURAAQEB has been the Milton Bradley stable’s star performer this season.

His fifth victory this year came at Chelmsford on Saturday evening. That’s no mean feat, as is the fact that it was his 15th race of 2019, which is quite something for a horse running over a mile and a quarter and a mile and a half.

Bred in the purple, Muraaqeb changed hands for £190,000 as a yearling. His sire Nathaniel was a Group 1-winning son of Galileo. He didn’t run aged two or three and was sold for £12,000 to Eddie Hayward, a great patron of Bradley’s yard; he has nine horses in training there. He didn’t beat many other horses in a dismal four-year-old career, and wind surgery halfway through the 2018 season seemed to make no difference. Mr Hayward must have thought he’d wasted his money.

But with the new year came a change of fortune. He won a classified stakes, despite having no chance on form, rated only 37. Since then he’s been making up for lost time, visiting the winner's enclosure four more times.

The persistently firm ground at Bath has led to reduced fields, and Ron Harris capitalised on this last week by supplying two for the five furlong handicap, which wound up with only two other opponents. The Harris pair, Broadhaven Dream and Thegreyvtrain, were first and second in the betting and finished first and second in the race, in the correct order as far as punters were concerned.

Broadhaven Dream was scoring for the second time in just his seventh race, and has the potential for further improvement. He made the running, and showed a good attitude to regain the lead after Thegreyvtrain headed him a furlong out. His jockey was of the opinion that firm ground wasn’t ideal for him. The runner-up has also won twice this season, but she could be a little high in the handicap now as a result of that. Her jockey David Probert rode his 68th winner of the year at Yarmouth last week.

Scofflaw completed a hat-trick for David Evans at Chester on Sunday. He won by a nose at Wolverhampton at the end of May, and after a seven-week gap took advantage of a lower rating on turf to win at Haydock – with hindsight, at remarkably generous odds of 16/1. Raised only four pounds by the handicapper, he came from behind to lead a furlong out and run on well to win by more than two lengths.

Scofflaw was trained by Richard Fahey until November, when he won for the fifth time for that major northern yard. They were all over six and seven furlongs, but when Evans got him he promptly tried the horse at a mile. He soon won over that trip, and his Chester victory was over a mile and a quarter.

Neither of the locally-trained two-year-olds to run at Glorious Goodwood, Evans’ Zulu Zander and Harris’ Don’t Stop Dancing, cut any ice in the exalted company they had to compete against. They may have to settle for nurseries.

The next racing at Chepstow is their final evening meeting of the summer on Thursday, August 15th. Prior to that, Saturday sees the track hosting the Chepstow Agricultural Show, the annual celebration of the best of the local rural community’s trades, talents and tastes.