Christophe Clement is hoping his Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf winner Pizza Bianca can book her Royal Ascot ticket when she runs at Pimlico on Preakness weekend later this month.
The Del Mar scorer holds an entry in the Coronation Stakes at the showpiece summer meeting, and while beaten on her three-year-old reappearance in Aqueduct’s Listed Memories of Silver Stakes she nevertheless ran a race full of promise.
The three-quarter-length winner of that $100,000 event was Chad Brown’s Consumer Spending, who was beaten by Pizza Bianca at the Breeders’ Cup, and Clement reports his filly to be working well ahead of her next run.
The New York-based trainer told PA Media: “She is very well, she will have two works now, one on the grass this weekend and another next week and then we’ll run her over here in a mile Stakes race at Pimlico on the weekend of the Preakness. As long as she runs well and we’re happy with the performance, we plan on bringing her over to England.”
Pizza Bianca accounted for many of the best fillies in Europe during her Del Mar victory and her Paris-born handler is delighted to see that form is being franked at all angles this season – not least in the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket.
“The form from Del Mar is working out very well, I’m delighted that the young George Boughey won the 1000 Guineas and it is all very exciting to see how the fillies develop from two to three,” Clement continued.
Pizza Bianca is a popular horse in America thanks to her owner-breeder Bobby Flay, the US celebrity chef, who served on the Breeders’ Cup board of directors from 2014 to 2018.
Flay’s passion for racing is one of the key reasons Pizza Bianca is making her transatlantic crossing for the Royal meeting and Clement said the owner would play a hands-on role in finalising running plans for his daughter of Fastnet Rock.
“He’s the main reason Pizza Bianca is coming to England! He will be very involved in making the final decision and Bobby Flay is a great, great racing enthusiast and very popular in America, he is a famous chef over here. It is great for racing and makes racing more popular,” explained Clement.
Clement also revealed he plans to run one of his three entries for the Commonwealth Cup, with Slipstream favourite to make the final line-up at this stage. The three-year-old has won three of his six starts and got the better of last year’s Queen Mary runner-up Twilight Gleaming when last sighted in Listed company at Keeneland.
Clement said: “We have three horses entered for the Commonwealth Cup and we intend on sending one of them over. Most possibly it will be a colt called Slipstream, who won his last race very impressively.”