Save A Forest took advantage of a sizeable drop in class to win the British Stallion Studs EBF Chalice Stakes at Newmarket.
Fourth behind Snowfall in the Oaks at Epsom, albeit beaten 19 lengths, Save A Forest was sent off at 13-2 in the Listed contest.
It looked a wide-open affair on paper with Derby winner Masar’s half-sister Sayyida and Frankel’s sister Chiasma in the field, as the Classic generation took on their elders.
Roger Varian had reached for first-time cheekpieces on Save A Forest and they clearly made a difference.
Sayyida and James Doyle hit the front a furlong out, taking over from Portfolio, but Callum Shepherd timed his challenge perfectly.
The pair drifted over to the fair rail, and Save A Forest dug in gamely to beat the 13-8 favourite by half a length. Portfolio stayed on again for third, a further neck away.
Tim Gredley, who owns the filly with his father, Bill, said: “We are kind of ready at the start now as we know she is sleepy and that is why we put the cheekpieces on.
“Callum knows how to ride her and she just keeps on going and going. I wasn’t worried as I was expecting her to be like that at the start.
“I said it the other day kind of flippantly, but she does remind of Big Orange as she has got that kind of gameness about her.
“She physically looks like him, but her running style is very different. She is just very hardy and relentless the way she gallops.
“She started on the all-weather and she was very weak back then, but we thought she would get better once we went on.”
An immediate return to Group One company could be on the cards for Save A Forest, who holds entries in both the Darley Yorkshire Oaks at York on August 19 and the Cazoo St Leger at Doncaster on September 11.
Gredley went on: “We like to swing the bat at big races, but will speak to Roger. However, she is not ground dependent.
“We will have a look at what is about. If anything she will be going up in trip as I think she needs a bit further to see her at her best.
“She will be around next season as well. She is here to race and we will enjoy her.
“Honestly I think she will be better next year once she has had a break and muscled up a bit. She is winning these races off guts and grit at the moment.”
As for runner-up Sayyida, her trainer Charlie Appleby is considering sending the daughter of Dubawi over to France on her next start.
He said: “It is her first time in a black0type race and she has gone and run a credible race.
“We know the winner is well thought of having finished fourth in an Oaks. Running up in second behind her we are pleased.
“It is a step in the right direction and she is now a black-type placed filly. I’d be confident she will be up to winning a race like this.
“James (Doyle) said she will be better with more juice in the ground so we will probably venture to France now and see if we can do some pot hunting there.”