ANTIGUA FIRE kept his unbeaten record in this year’s Coral Regency going with thrilling off-the-pace performance to collar Zascandil (Kevin Boon) in the third semi-final of the GBGB Category One event over 695m.

The runner-up had set off at a furious pace after breaking well and the odds-on favourite was forced to battle hard to get into a position from which to challenge but conjured up a powerful run to catch Zascandil close home to win by a neck in 41.90sec (-60).

The victory delighted trainer Mark Wallis, who said of his multiple big-race finalist and Kent St Leger champion: “It was another fantastic run from Teddy. Once Kevin’s dog had trapped and led it was going to be tough to catch him and he only just got there just before the line.

“However it’s another big final for owners Amanda and Nic Jeal’s pride and joy,” added Wallis. It’s a great Regency final and has certainly cheered everybody up in this difficult climate we’re in at the moment.

“Looking at the way Teddy runs and how strong he is we’ll have to give the TV Trophy some consideration, although the St Leger at Perry Barr will be his main aim after this.”

Affirmed, trained at Perry Barr by Pat Doocey, reeled in Southfield Code (Kevin Hutton) in another thrilling Regency semi-final – initiating a double for the Birmingham track given Drahbeg Dash later won a Sussex Cup semi.

The winning time was 42.61sec (-60) and was a victory which delighted Perry Barr racing Martin Seal, especially given Drahbeg Dash’s win later.

“It was certainly a great night for Perry Barr!” said Seal. “I thought  Affirmed had a good shout of qualifying but didn’t think he’d quite win it, but he really has produced the goods so well done Pat Doocey and his team.

“I’ve actually liked the big fella ever since I clapped eyes on him, jig-jogging around the paddock. He’s got a real swagger about him and it showed again last night. We always knew he was capable given he ‘won’ a six-bend race here by ten lengths – it was actually a no-race because the traps opened early.

“But he’s flourished over the trip and set up a good evening for us with Drahbeg Dash. Him and Gerry (Ballentine) have represented Perry Barr well over the past couple of seasons – I just hope a few of his fans here at Perry Barr took the 33-1!”

The second semi-final of the Coral Regency went to the Patrick Janssens-trained senior Affleck Lady who was always handy and caught Unlikely Rogue (David Elcock) by a length in 42.58sec (-60).

It means the Janssens camp has a runner in each of next week’s GBGB Category One finals at Hove with Bockos Doomie securing a place in the Sussex Cup decider.

Form and trap draw for Saturday’s finals: