Summer success in Unequal Love’s sights

Following an originally unplanned appearance and ultimate victory at Royal Ascot, Unequal Love returns to Plan A in the William Hill Summer Stakes at York on Friday.

A Listed winner on her seasonal debut at Newmarket, the daughter of Dutch Art then journeyed to Ireland where she finished a creditable fifth against hardened sprinters in the Group Two Greenlands Stakes.

Connections were initially minded to keep their powder dry for this week’s Group Three assignment on the Knavesmire – but on the request of Cheveley Park Stud owner Patricia Thompson, Unequal Love did turn up in Berkshire and the decision paid off as she claimed top honours in the Wokingham Stakes.

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“This was the plan really, to go straight to York, but Mrs Thompson asked William (Haggas) if she could have the filly run on the Saturday of Royal Ascot and it was rather fun and a good giggle for everybody to see her win there,” said Cheveley Park’s managing director Chris Richardson.

“She showed her class and came out of the race really well. She’s an absolutely beautiful filly and while she’s by Dutch Art, she’s very much a Pivotal to look at and looks progressive.

“We were concerned about the quick ground and the draw at Ascot and it didn’t seem to be a problem at all. I think they’ve had a lot of rain at York, so it will be interesting to see what happens.

“She’s a classy filly in the making and the run in the Group Two in Ireland showed the class she has.”

One of Unequal Love’s biggest threats appears to be Great Generation, who is already a Group Three winner having lunged late to land the Chartwell Fillies’ Stakes at Lingfield in early May.

Great Generation (left) winning the Chartwell Fillies' Stakes at Lingfield
Great Generation (left) winning the Chartwell Fillies’ Stakes at Lingfield (Steve Paston/PA)

Marco Botti has since saved his three-year-old for this race and is confident of a bold showing.

He said: “This has been the plan for a while and as long as the ground doesn’t change dramatically, I think she’ll go, as she’s handled soft ground in the past.

“She’s in great order and the drop back from seven to six furlongs I don’t think is going to be an issue – she has plenty of speed.

“Obviously she carries a 3lb penalty, but she’s a nice filly who won well in the Chartwell Stakes.

“It’s not an easy race, but I’m sure she’s there with a good chance.”

Adaay In Devon has already enjoyed an excellent season for trainer Rod Millman, with three wins supplemented by placed efforts in Group Three and Listed company.

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“At the start of the season, as she’d had such a successful season last year and had a handicap rating of 95, I did think she might struggle this year because of her mark. But she’s proved me wrong,” said the Devon-based trainer.

“She keeps improving every time we run her. She has won two Listed races and a valuable handicap and been placed in a Group Three. She keeps pulling out a little bit more.

“She’s had a nice break, a few weeks off, and has come back training very well. I took her for an away gallop last weekend – one of my fellow trainers here, Stuart Kittow, has got one of the best gallops around. It was just somewhere different to go and it did her good.

“She did a nice bit of work just to put her straight and I’m looking forward to a very good run. She likes soft ground, so any rain at York is a benefit to us.”

Unequal Love is one of two runners for William Haggas, along with another Listed winner in Pink Crystal.

Other contenders include the first and second from the Listed Cathedral Stakes at Salisbury, the Owen Burrows-trained Raqiya and Funny Story from Ralph Beckett’s yard.

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