Tag Archive for: Chris Richardson

Inspiral team hail ‘unbelievable’ Jacques le Marois double

Cheveley Park Stud’s Chris Richardson has reflected on a “special moment and a great triumph” as Inspiral oozed class in the defence her Prix Jacques le Marois title at Deauville.

The four-year-old is now a four-time winner at Group One level, and was arguably at the peak of her powers on the Normandy coast as she scooted clear of big-race favourite Big Rock following an inspired ride from Frankie Dettori, who was registering a record-extending eighth success in the showpiece event.

The victory was made all the more spectacular coming just 11 days after Inspiral had failed in her bid to topple Paddington in Goodwood’s Sussex Stakes, and Richardson, who is managing director of Cheveley Park, was full of praise for both Dettori and the training heroics of John and Thady Gosden following the filly’s quick turnaround in fortunes.

Inspiral after her exceptional Deauville victory
Inspiral after her exceptional Deauville victory (PA)

He said: “Unbelievable, it was fantastic and it’s full marks to every aspect of the team really.

“Frankie really looked after her at Goodwood and as I’ve said before, when he made his move on Inspiral to get the rail, her burst was short lived and he accepted it and just let her come home – and full marks to John for having the courage to say let’s go back 11 days later too.

“It all worked in her favour and I think it was probably one of the best performances of her career.”

Last year Inspiral prevailed by a neck from David Simcock’s Light Infantry, but this time around a stellar cast of milers had assembled and what made the triumph all the more remarkable was Dettori’s ingenious ploy of taking the filly all the way over to the far side of the track from her position in stall one to find the perfect position to mount a winning challenge.

Frankie Dettori hails the Deauville crowd after an inspired ride
Frankie Dettori hails the Deauville crowd after an inspired ride (PA)

“It was sensational and to be as brave as Frankie was to go from basically draw one to draw 12 and come down the outside having gone a lot further than everybody else, I think even he was as wide-eyed surprised that she just kept on motoring,” added Richardson.

“She loves a fast pace which she got and the ground had dried up enough and she has proved now that she goes on fast ground, good ground and good to soft ground.”

The Marois serves as a ‘win and you’re in’ race for the Breeders’ Cup Mile and a trip to Santa Anita in November is just one of a plethora of options now available for Inspiral, who also holds entries closer to home in the Matron Stakes (Leopardstown, September 9), Sun Chariot Stakes (Newmarket, October 7) and Queen Elizabeth II Stakes on British Champions Day (Ascot, October 21).

However, with all connected with the daughter of Frankel revelling in her latest triumph, the dust will be allowed to settle on her successful French raid before plans for later in the season are firmed up.

Inspiral and Frankie Dettori with Richard Thompson and Chris Richardson at Deauville
Inspiral and Frankie Dettori with Richard Thompson and Chris Richardson at Deauville (PA)

Richardson added: “Sadly Mrs (Patricia) Thompson (Cheveley Park owner) couldn’t be there, but Richard her son came with me and had a really special day. He was thrilled just like his mother and it was a great lift for everyone really. It was a special moment and a great triumph for all concerned.

“There is lots to think about now. John and I just thought on the plane home we would see how she is in a week to 10 days time. Mrs Thompson is also coming up this week, so we can discuss what plans we might want to consider.

“She has plenty of entries and if the Breeders’ Cup is something Mrs Thompson is prepared to consider then who knows, she might end up there. We will enjoy this moment and enjoy the next few weeks of planning.”

Marois repeat on the cards for Inspiral

Connections of Inspiral could opt to bypass both the Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket and the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood in favour of a return to Deauville for the Prix Jacques le Marois.

Last season, the John and Thady Gosden-trained filly remained unbeaten in five runs when taking a second Group One victory in the Coronation Stakes, before being defeated for the first time in the Falmouth by Prosperous Voyage.

The daughter of Frankel bounced back to land the Group One Prix Jacques le Marois before she was beaten for just a second time in the Queen Elizabeth II at Ascot in October.

Last week she returned from a 248-day absence and went down a neck by Triple Time in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot.

Chris Richardson, managing director of owners Cheveley Park Stud, was more than satisfied with her Ascot run.

“We were thrilled,” said Richardson. “Although we were disappointed not to win. We were hopeful as we knew Inspiral was in great shape and was the one they had to beat, and unfortunately there was one that did.

“But she’s a talented filly and I felt (it was) a great run for her first time out.

“We put her in the Falmouth, but I’m not sure we’ll go. We went there last year and regretted it.

“So, I suspect we’ll probably go Prix Jacques le Marois again – I don’t know, we’ll see how she is, see what she’s telling us.

“I wouldn’t entirely rule out the Sussex, but John Gosden feels a flat track probably suits her better.”

The iconic red, white and blue Cheveley Park colours filled the runner-up spot again when Khaadem swooped late to deny Sacred the spoils in the Group One Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes.

“Sacred being beaten a neck was frustrating,” said Richardson. “She ran a blinder and she ran her best race there last year and was beaten a length (in the same race).

“It was just frustrating that we came to win the race and Jamie Spencer produced one of his specialties from behind which denied us the triumph, but there we are.

“She’s really thrived from four to five and we’re really pleased with what she’s done.”

Sacred (centre) was beaten by the flying finish of Khaadem (right) in the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes
Sacred (centre) was beaten by the flying finish of Khaadem (right) in the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes (John Walton/PA)

The William Haggas-trained daughter of Exceed And Excel may have to use her passport for the first time, as a trip to France may be in the offing.

“The Prix Maurice de Gheest in Deauville will be a serious consideration at this point. I think that’s her ideal trip, six and a half (furlongs),” Richardson added.

“She has got all the entries, because obviously she is desperate to go when the ground is the best for her, which is obviously quick ground as we saw last week.

“The Falmouth for both those fillies was really just in case something went wrong and we couldn’t run last week, and we had that up our sleeve.”

Little went right in running for Twilight Calls, who did well to finish fourth to Bradsell in the King’s Stand.

Twilight Calls got no luck in running under Ryan Moore
Twilight Calls got no luck in running under Ryan Moore (David Davies/PA)

The Henry Candy-trained five-year-old gelding was squeezed for room at the start of the five-furlong dash and failed to get a clear run when Ryan Moore attempted to make his move approaching a furlong out.

Richardson said: “Twilight Calls just got checked at the wrong moment. Ryan was very apologetic. It was not his fault, it was just the way the race unravelled. He said he would have gone very close.

“All being well, he came out of the race fine, and we’ll probably go to Goodwood and then target York.

“I think the Nunthorpe will be his main target, depending on how it’s going.”

He added: “Having run in three Group Ones to be as close as they were was exciting, but a little frustrating from my perspective.”

Queen Anne the target for reappearance of Inspiral

Inspiral will head straight to Royal Ascot after bypassing the Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.

The Group One-winning filly, trained by John and Thady Gosden, had topped the ante-post market for the Group One mile contest at the Berkshire track.

However, she was a surprise omission for the feature event at the confirmation stage on Monday.

Owned by Cheveley Park Stud, the daughter of Frankel won the Coronation Stakes and the Prix Jacques le Marois in her three-year-old campaign, adding to her success in the Fillies’ Mile as a juvenile.

While the Gosdens will instead be represented by Laurel, who is one of 16 possibles for the race won by the brilliant Baaeed last season, Inspiral will make a belated four-year-old debut.

Cheveley Park Stud’s managing director Chris Richardson explained: “There is no issue with her. Mrs Thompson was adamant that she wanted the filly to go straight to Royal Ascot, as we did last year.

“She looks great, but she is not quite there, is the general feeling. It is like last year, so rather than rush her, we decided to wait.

“It has been cold and miserable and it has just taken time for these fillies to come to themselves.

“We just felt she blossomed in June last year and we didn’t really want to rush her, so the Queen Anne will be her likely target.”