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Oaks enters equation for Saffron Beach

Saffron Beach has the Cazoo Oaks among possible next destinations following her fine effort in defeat in the 1000 Guineas.

Jane Chapple-Hyam’s filly beat all bar Aidan O’Brien’s Mother Earth in the Newmarket Classic on Sunday, and was staying on again crossing the line.

Connections are consequently giving thought to another Classic bid next month – with the Coronation Stakes, Irish Guineas and Pretty Polly Stakes also in the mix.

Saffron Beach (third from right) beat all bar Mother Earth
Saffron Beach (third from right) beat all bar Mother Earth (David Davies/Jockey Club)

“She’s fine and licked her bowl clean,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“I suppose we felt every emotion – delighted with how she ran, but gutted to come so close to winning a Classic.

“The owners are now making a decision whether they want to run her in the Oaks or not.

“When they were pulling up as they go up the hill, she was full of it. She certainly stayed every yard of the mile. You could nearly say she was first off the bridle because she wanted further.”

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Saffron Beach has shown in her short career to date that she is adaptable to conditions as well as distance.

“She’s a filly who is versatile on all goings,” added her trainer.

“She won the Oh So Sharp on soft, and handled fast ground on Sunday. That opens up going abroad with her, because you’re not worried whether it’s going to rain or not, which is a big plus.

“She’s so uncomplicated, so genuine – and it looks exciting times for her stallion, New Bay. Her pedigree says a mile, to be fair, but New Bay won a French Derby and was third in an Arc.

“We’re not in the Prix Diane – with Covid and Brexit, there’s enough headaches.

“So she’s in the Oaks, the Coronation and also the Pretty Polly at the Curragh over 10 furlongs – so we’ve got all distances covered. She’s also in the Irish Guineas, so it’s up to the owners where they want to go – and I’ll get her ready for it.”

Saffron Beach fared a good deal better than stablemate Albadri, who should have been Chapple-Hyam’s first representative in a Classic but reared over on leaving the paddock before Saturday’s 2000 Guineas and was withdrawn.

Bellosa was very impressive on her debut
Bellosa was very impressive on her debut (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

“She ended up being my first runner in a Classic because of Albadri,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“It was so strange – he’s been to Saudi and back and never done anything like that, he just would not leave the paddock. He was fine anyway – we’ve had him checked over twice.”

The once-raced Bellosa is another possibility for the Coronation Stakes, but she will return to Newmarket for the Betway King Charles II Stakes first.

The three-year-old daughter of Awtaad bolted up by seven lengths in a maiden at the Craven meeting, landing some hefty bets in the process.

“I think the obvious race is the Listed one at Newmarket on May 15, the King Charles II,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“That would be against the colts – but the way she performed in her maiden and looking at the times and everything, you wouldn’t be afraid of taking on the colts.

“Also they’ve got to give her a few pounds as well – which is a bonus. She did it very impressively first time out.

“As for her trip in the future, it’s still up for debate I suppose. I like seven furlongs, and the owner likes a mile, so we’ll just take each as it comes because she’s still raw at the moment – she’ll tell us her capabilities in competition.”

Chapple-Hyam thrilled by Guineas runner-up Saffron Beach

Jane Chapple-Hyam saluted the “genius” of Aidan O’Brien as she reflected on the fine run of Saffron Beach to take second in the Qipco 1000 Guineas.

Winner of the Oh So Sharp Stakes last year, Chapple-Hyam’s New Bay filly reappeared on the Rowley Mile in the Nell Gwyn last month when she was second behind Sacred.

Hopes were high for a big performance in the Newmarket Classic, and she duly turned the form around with Sacred – but just found Mother Earth a length too good.

Chapple-Hyam said: “What can I say, Aidan O’Brien is just a genius. He is hard to take on – and I can’t wait for him to retire!

“It would have been the quickest ground she has been on. But she can handle it because she is versatile, as you saw in the Oh So Sharp on good to soft, and she has done it here on the quicker ground.

“We are just all thrilled, and I’m sure the owners are highly delighted because they have got a second in the 1000 Guineas. This time last year, she wasn’t even in training.

“She has seen the mile out 100 per cent. I knew she would get the mile and I know she will get a mile and a quarter as well. They (owners) will tell me where to send her, and I will just get her fit. There is a good one in her.

“We just have to place her properly now and we will see what the team wants to do.”

Richard Fahey was also proud of the third home, Fev Rover, running a storming race to be just a neck behind Saffron Beach and a nose in front of Santa Barbara.

The North Yorkshire trainer said: “We were delighted with her – it wasn’t a truly-run race really.

“Paul (Hanagan) felt the ground was a bit quick for her – she just rolled about a bit – but you’d have to be happy with that.

“She probably will go further in time, and a bit of juice in the ground doesn’t bother her at all.

“She’s in the Irish Guineas, and that was going to be the plan – that or Royal Ascot.

“We will step her up in trip at some stage. We’ll just see how she takes the race.”

Chapple-Hyam relishing Guineas challenge with Saffron Beach

Jane Chapple-Hyam has never been afraid of a challenge and in Saffron Beach she has a genuine live chance in Sunday’s Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket.

It has been one-way traffic in the betting this spring for Aidan O’Brien’s Santa Barbara, who is set to go off an even shorter price for the Classic following the defection of Fillies’ Mile winner Pretty Gorgeous on Friday morning.

Saffron Beach has achieved more on the track, though. Unbeaten in two runs as a juvenile, including success in the Oh So Sharp Stakes, she looked sure to be suited by stepping up to a mile when second on her return in the Nell Gwyn, finishing behind the reopposing Sacred.

“From all accounts Adam (Kirby) was happy with her last time,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“It was a trial and he feels she was strong at the line and took a fair bit to pull up. With that in mind, we’re really looking forward to running her over a mile.

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“Once the winner had flown a bit, Adam wasn’t too hard on her, so she had a good experience and didn’t have too hard a race. She wouldn’t have been fully wound-up there, either.

“She had a good experience. It was her third time on the track which can count for a lot in the Guineas, she picked up some more black type – which is important – and we’re looking forward to Sunday, when hopefully she can pick up some Group One black type.”

Given the positive reports from O’Brien about the favourite, Chapple-Hyam feels if they are correct, Santa Barbara could be a new superstar.

“Aidan’s no fool. If he feels she’s been galloping well against colts, that just says it all. Good fillies can go by colts,” she said.

“If she’s as good as that, then we might have a new Enable on the scene.”

Pretty Gorgeous misses out following an unsatisfactory scope.

The Joseph O’Brien-trained daughter of Lawman had been second favourite, but O’Brien said on Twitter: “Unfortunately due to an unsatisfactory scope Pretty Gorgeous will not be declared for the 1000 Guineas this weekend.”

In her absence, 12 were declared for the Classic, with Santa Barbara joined by stablemate Mother Earth.

Andrew Balding’s Alcohol Free, winner of the Cheveley Park last season and the Fred Darling on her return two weeks ago, arguably heads the home defence.

She just held on from Statement and Vadream at Newbury and the three meet again.

Nell Gwyn winner Sacred represents Cheveley Park Stud and William Haggas, while Richard Fahey is sweet on the claims of Fev Rover, a Group Two winner in France last season in the Prix du Calvados.

Thunder Beauty, Lullaby Moon, Seattle Rock and Star Of Emaraaty complete the field.

Chapple-Hyam has high hopes for Beach

Jane Chapple-Hyam’s Saffron Beach will bid to maintain her unbeaten record and prove her Guineas credentials when she lines up for the Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket.

The three-year-old already has a Group Three win to her name after claiming the Oh So Sharp Stakes in October.

Prior to that the chestnut was an impressive winner on her debut in September, again over seven furlongs at Newmarket, and is therefore unbeaten in two starts ahead of Wednesday’s contest.

“She’s really well, she wintered well and we’re looking forward to her run,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“She’s two from two on the course, so I’d expect a bold show from her.”

The going on the Rowley Mile is currently described as good, something Chapple-Hyam feels her filly will appreciate after facing soft ground when winning the Oh So Sharp.

“We were more concerned about running her on the soft,” she said.

“We know she likes the good ground in training, so she’ll be happy with that.”

Also involved is William Haggas’ Sacred, who begins her three-year-old season after a busy and successful juvenile campaign.

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Placed in the Queen Mary, Lowther and Flying Childers, she disappointed in the Cheveley Park but is reported to have trained on.

“She’s great, she’s wintered well and she looks like she’s physically developed and strengthened,” said Chris Richardson, managing director of owner Cheveley Park Stud.

Sacred, ridden by James Doyle, goes on to win the Betway EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies’ Stakes at Newmarket Racecourse
Sacred, ridden by James Doyle, goes on to win the Betway EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies’ Stakes at Newmarket Racecourse (David Davies/PA)

“She seems to be in good form, so we’ll find out whether she’s potentially a Guineas horse or whether the trip might be a bit far for her.

“There’s plenty to play for and she’s in great form.”

Another leading chance is Charlie Appleby’s Divine Light, a Kingman filly who won over seven furlongs on her debut at Newmarket in October.

“Divine Light is a sharp filly, with a course and distance win under her belt,” the trainer told www.godolphin.com.

“It looks a competitive renewal of the race and this should tell us where we are with her.”

Divine Light ridden by William Buick (right) wins The Godolphin Under Starters Orders Maiden Fillies’ Stakes at Newmarket Racecourse
Divine Light ridden by William Buick (right) wins The Godolphin Under Starters Orders Maiden Fillies’ Stakes at Newmarket Racecourse (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Roger Charlton also has a live chance in the race, with Love Is You a winner of both her two starts to date, including an impressive triumph in the Listed Radley Stakes at Newbury.

Jason Watson, who was on board for both victories and takes the ride once more.

“Love Is You is exciting, she has wintered well and looks great,” said Watson.

“Steve Raymont, who rides her out every day, has been very happy with her.

“I’ve not sat on her, but I’ve confidence in the team and what they think and I think she should run well.

“Though she has won at Ascot and Newbury which are pretty level tracks, I don’t think Newmarket will be an issue as she is quite well balanced.

“She won on heavy ground at the end of the season, but I don’t think she necessarily needs that ground. I think good ground is what she wants.

“Stamina will be no issue, while she looks stronger this year and that seems to have increased her speed a bit.”

Frankie Dettori will partner Star Of Emaraaty for John and Thady Gosden, with the filly having her first start since leaving the yard of Kevin Ryan.

“Star Of Emaraaty was purchased by Teruya Yoshida, who kindly placed her with John,” Dettori explained.

“It will be interesting to see where we are with her as the winter can change a lot of things, but she is already a Group Three winner and I’m looking forward to seeing what we find out.”

Making up the field of 10 is Tawhub, a stablemate of Star Of Emaraaty who runs on turf for the first time, and Richard Fahey’s experienced filly Ventura Diamond.

Adrian Nicholls is represented by Mamba Wamba, while Hugo Palmer runs Chocoya and Sylvester Kirk sends out Seattle Rock.

Guineas hopefuls on trial in Nell Gwyn

Saffron Beach and Love Is You, two lively outsiders for next month’s Qipco 1000 Guineas, put their Classic hopes on the line in Wednesday’s Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket.

The pair, trained by Jane Chapple-Hyam and Roger Charlton respectively, are both 20-1 shots for the fillies’ Classic, in which Aidan O’Brien’s Santa Barbara currently dominates the ante-post betting.

Saffron Beach won each of her two starts last term, including the Group Three Oh So Sharp Stakes, while Love Is You was also unbeaten in two, with a Listed success the highlight.

Sacred (right) finished second to Campanelle at Royal Ascot
Sacred (right) finished second to Campanelle at Royal Ascot (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

William Haggas’ Sacred is the top-rated among 10 runners having finished second in Group Two company on three occasions, with John and Thady Gosden fielding two in Tawahub and Star Of Emaraaty, who will be making her debut for the yard having won the Sweet Solera at odds of 66-1 when trained by Kevin Ryan last term.

Divine Light, Chocoya, Mamba Wamba, Seattle Rock and Ventura Diamond complete the field.

O’Brien’s Ontario leads the way in the bet365 European Free Handicap, having finished fifth behind Sunday’s Leopardstown winner Poetic Flare on his final start last season.

Tactical won the July Stakes last year
Tactical won the July Stakes last year (Francesca Altoft/PA)

Meydan winner Naval Crown represents Charlie Appleby with Tactical, a Group Two winner for Andrew Balding and The Queen last year, another eyecatching contender in a field of seven.

The bet365 Earl of Sefton Stakes has drawn six contenders, with the Gosden team looking particularly strong with Easter Classic third Forest Of Dean and Magnolia Stakes victor Global Giant.

Roger Varian’s San Donato was last seen chasing home Addeybb at Ayr last September with Marie’s Diamond, My Oberon and Solid Stone the other contenders.

Saffron Beach will sit out Breeders’ Cup

Jane Chapple-Hyam has decided against a trip to the Breeders’ Cup with her unbeaten filly Saffron Beach.

An impressive four-and-a-half-length winner on her debut at Newmarket, she followed up there two weeks later in the Group Three Oh So Sharp Stakes on soft ground.

In the immediate aftermath, Chapple-Hyam had intimated she was keen on a trip to America with the New Bay filly – but she will now be roughed off for the season before reappearing in a 1000 Guineas trial.

“She’s going to have a rest now, before she comes back for the Nell Gwyn and the Guineas,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“The main reason we’re not going is the owners wouldn’t be able to attend, and also she’d had two quick runs, so it’s best for her that she has a break with next year in mind.

“We’ll have the opportunity to travel with her next year.”

The Newmarket trainer anticipates further progression, adding: “She’s just a natural. She was a late developer – but as soon as she got fit, the fitter she got the better she got.

“Looking at her pedigree, most have got better with age, so that’s what we’ve got to look forward to.

“That’s why I think the best thing to do is rug her up now, and look forward to next year.”

Saffron Beach enters Breeders’ Cup frame following Newmarket victory

Saffron Beach set up a potential outing at next month’s Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland with victory in the Godolphin Lifetime Care Oh So Sharp Stakes at Newmarket.

Having run out an impressive winner over course and distance on her debut 13 days ago, the Jane Chapple-Hyam-trained filly took a step up in class in her stride in the seven-furlong Group Three.

Moving into contention approaching the final quarter of a mile, the 9-4 favourite found plenty for pressure to hold off the attentions of Thank You Next by half a length.

Following the race, Saffron Beach was introduced at 10-1 for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf by Paddy Power.

Chapple-Hyam said: “That was very good and the staff at home have done a wonderful job. She is a quick learner and I’d love to have a crack at the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Keeneland, if the owners will allow me.

“We know she is good. I had Annie Skates who was second in the Juvenile Fillies’ race at the Breeders’ Cup and this one is probably a quicker learner than Annie.

“For what she has done at home, we thought this was a suitable step up in grade. She has got a good lead horse in Suzi’s Connoisseur, so thank God for him. The old nine-year-old dog came good!”

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Winter Power showed no signs of a busy campaign catching up with her after making virtually all to claim the Newmarket Academy Godolphin Beacon Project Cornwallis Stakes.

The Tim Easterby-trained daughter of Bungle Inthejungle secured her fourth victory from nine starts this season with a clear-cut success in the Group Three prize.

Although briefly headed midway through the five-furlong dash, the 10-1 shot, who claimed Listed honours at Ayr on her last outing, quickly pressed on once regaining the initiative to cross the line three lengths clear of runner-up and favourite, Method.

Winter Power was too good for her rivals in the Cornwallis Stakes
Winter Power was too good for her rivals in the Cornwallis Stakes (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Winning jockey Silvestre de Sousa said: “She won quite well at Ayr and has bounced back in great form. She has done really well and won very easily. She just ran in a very competitive race (Flying Childers) at Doncaster where I got beat on her.

“She has shown me plenty of encouragement today to travel very handy and when I asked her the question coming down the dip she handled it well and put the race to bed very nicely.”

Despite Winter Power – who was introduced at 25-1 for the Commonwealth Cup with William Hill and 33-1 by Betfair – being campaigned exclusively over five furlongs this season, De Sousa believes that with time she might get a bit further.

He added: “This year five is as far as we want to go, but we are nearly at the end of the season and with another couple of months on her back six furlongs will be suitable.

“I think when she fills up over the winter she might just strengthen up. I don’t know how good she will be, but she will always be in the mix in good races.”

The Ian Williams-trained Kingbrook (14-1) sweated up badly before the start of the valuable bet365 Old Rowley Cup, but it certainly did not slow him down.

Richard Kingscote stole a march on his rivals running and managed to hold off the fast finish of Hollie Doyle on Louganini by half a length.

Angel Power (100-30 favourite) continued her progression to give De Sousa a treble in the Darley Pride Stakes, following his earlier win in the Cornwallis and his success in the Challenge Stakes on Happy Power.

Trainer Roger Varian said: “I will have to speak to Alastair Donald (King Power racing manager), but I think she has got maybe another run in her this year.

“Let’s see how she comes out of this race. We quite like the E.P. Taylor (Woodbine) as we won that a couple of years ago with Sheikha Reika and we’ve had fillies placed in that race before.”