Tag Archive for: Shadwell

Mostahdaf steps up for Gordon Richards test

Mostahdaf bids to make it three wins from as many visits to Sandown when he steps up to a mile and quarter for the first time in Friday’s bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes.

The Frankel colt was stepped up to Group One level after landing the Listed Stakes here last May.

John and Thady Gosden’s charge was ultimately well beaten at Royal Ascot in the St James’s Palace Stakes, but bounced back with a second Listed success at Sandown before bagging a Group Three prize at Newmarket.

Faced with just two rivals on his seasonal reappearance, Mostahdaf will be a warm order to to claim a sixth win from seven starts in the hands of Jim Crowley.

Angus Gold, racing manager for owner-breeders Shadwell, said: “It’s his first time over a mile and a quarter, which will be interesting, but he’s been working well and everybody is happy with him so far.

“I think he’s a more mature horse now, so hopefully he’ll continue his progression.”

Mostahdaf’s Darley Stakes success means he must concede 3lb to both the Andrew Balding-trained Fox Tales and Kevin Ryan’s Juan Elcano.

Foxes Tales won a Royal Ascot handicap and a Group Three at Haydock last season and was last seen finishing seventh in the Qipco Champion Stakes at Ascot.

Foxes Tales and Oisin Murphy winning at Royal Ascot
Foxes Tales and Oisin Murphy winning at Royal Ascot (David Davies/PA)

“He’s the sort of horse that’ll benefit for a racecourse appearance. He’s a big, heavy horse and quite lazy at home, so no doubt he’ll come on for a run,” said Balding.

“The hope is that he’ll stay a mile and a half and that is something we’ll experiment with, probably after this race.”

The other Group Three on Friday’s card is the bet365 Classic Trial, in which Goldspur will be widely expected to play a starring role for the red-hot combination of Charlie Appleby and William Buick.

The son of Dubawi made a winning debut here in September and rounded off his juvenile campaign by finishing third in the Group One Criterium de Saint-Cloud a month later.

Appleby told the Godolphin website: “We have been pleased with how Goldspur has progressed over the winter. He broke his maiden at Sandown and went on to get some nice form in the book at Newmarket and Saint-Cloud. If he reproduces the top end of his juvenile form, he is going to be very competitive.

“Like all three-year-olds at this time of year, everyone is trying to see where they fit in the rankings. Hopefully, this is a stepping-stone on to better things, and a step up in distance in time is going to see further improvement.”

Goldspur is one of two Godolphin-owned runners along with John and Thady Gosden’s Newcastle novice winner Franz Strauss, who is joined by stablemate Frantastic.

The other hopefuls are Aidan O’Brien’s Irish raider River Thames, a debut winner at Punchestown, David Simcock’s Newmarket scorer Cash and Westover from Ralph Beckett’s yard.

Shadwell attracted ‘some interest’ from Manchester City owners

Owners of Premier League champions Manchester City have had discussions with the Shadwell Estate Company about purchasing part of the racing and breeding enterprise.

It is believed that City owner, Sheikh Mansour, one of the Middle East’s most powerful business men, as well as UAE deputy prime minister, made preliminary enquiries following the death of owner and founder Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum in March this year and the subsequent announcement that Shadwell was to undertake “a full review of all its activities that will result in important changes for the business”.

However, the discussions fell at the first hurdle, according to Chris Kennard, the UK director of Shadwell Estate Company Ltd.

He confirmed: “That is not happening. There was some interest and some discussions, but nothing came to fruition.

General view of a sign in the stands baring the words 'Manchester Thanks you, Sheikh Mansour'
General view of a sign in the stands baring the words ‘Manchester Thanks you, Sheikh Mansour’ (Martin Rickett/PA)

“There was a discussion but it did not lead anywhere.

“As is evidenced by our earlier announcement, we are undergoing a reorganisation and nothing is set in stone at the current time.”

The racing and breeding enterprise was established by Sheikh Hamdan in the 1980s, with the famous blue and white silks carried by greats of the Turf such as Nashwan, Salsabil, Dayjur and Battaash and Prix du Moulin hero Baaeed.

Although cutting back on operations, Sheikh Hamdan’s daughter, Sheikha Hissa, is keen to remain involved in racing, and there are no plans to sell any of its stallions, which include top miler Mohaather, Muhaarar, Tasleet and Eqtidaar, who all reside at Nunnery Stud in Norfolk.