Tag Archive for: Sun Chariot

Juddmonte newcomers could light up next few months

Laurel has been handed a “speculative” entry in the Sun Chariot Stakes after her impressive debut win at Newmarket on Friday.

Trained by John and Thady Gosden, the three-year-old daughter of Kingman was well supported on her mile debut and drew readily clear of Mashaaer, who had been runner-up in the Listed Pretty Polly Stakes over 10 furlongs at Headquarters in May and ran well at Royal Ascot.

Ridden by Ray Dawson, the 6-5 favourite had three lengths to spare after quickening up impressively.

The Juddmonte homebred may now take an immediate step up in class, although Barry Mahon, the owners’ racing manager, said he felt keeping her sights a little lower might be the preferred option.

“It was a very nice performance and the second obviously has a very high rating, having finished second in the Pretty Polly, which legitimises the form of it, and she did it well,” said Mahon.

“She has been a slow-burner. John and Thady have been patient with her and brought her along slowly, and we have made a speculative entry in the Sun Chariot (at Newmarket on October 2) with her, but that is probably tilting at windmills a little bit.

“She is nice filly who can progress and we will see in the next start or two how we get on with her.”

Haskoy is another Juddmonte three-year-old filly who made an eyecatching debut on Friday, winning by seven lengths on her debut in a mile-and-a-half Wolverhampton novice.

The Ralph Beckett-trained daughter of Golden Horn could move up significantly in grade, with the Galtres Stakes on the second day of York’s Ebor Festival a tentative target.

“Haskoy did it very well and the form got the little bit of a franking on Saturday with Ralph’s filly (Star Fortress) finishing third in the Chalice.

“She’d beaten the second horse (Jahoori) a length and a half on her last start, and we beat her by seven lengths, so that was a little bit of a boost.

“We will see how she comes out of it this week, but we are half-thinking about the Galtres.

“She has not been in training very long and we are a little bit on the back foot – she only went into training about six or seven weeks ago.

“So we will monitor over the next week to make sure it is not too much too soon, but if she is in good shape, we will look at that.”

Sir Michael Stoute is eyeing a pair of Group Two contests for Nostrum, a striking three-length winner of a seven-furlong Sandown maiden in the famous green and pink colours.

The two-year-old Kingman colt is now set for either the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster over a similar trip on September 10 or the Juddmonte Royal Lodge over a mile at Newmarket on September 24.

Mahon said: “Nostrum a nice colt. Michael and his team were pretty happy with him going into Sandown and he delivered.

“He would look at races like the Royal Lodge and the Champagne.

“It is very unlikely he will have another run in between. He is a big horse and he is all about next year and we don’t want to over-cook him this year.”

Connections of the Ger Lyons-trained Apricot Twist will take a look at the ground conditions ahead of racing at Naas on Monday to determine if the runaway debut course and distance winner will take her chance in the six-furlong Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes.

“She is an intended runner in the Ballyhane – if we don’t get too much more rain,” said Mahon. “We have had a lot of rain in Ireland in the last 24 hours, so we will have a look at the track in the morning and if Ger and his team are happy, she will partake in it.

“If it is too soft, we will wait for a stakes race at the Curragh in three weeks’ time instead.”

Frankel gained another notable record on Saturday
Frankel gained another notable record on Saturday (PA)

Juddmonte sire Frankel, who retired unbeaten with 10 Group One victories to his name, has made a blistering start at stud.

Having already produced three Classic winners this year in the shape of Homeless Songs, Westover and Nashwa, the son of the late Galileo gained another notable first on Saturday when Emotion captured the Chalice Stakes at Newmarket.

For that victory was Frankel’s 100th individual stakes winner and equalled the record time in order to achieve the milestone with Danehill, who also took 2,402 days to reach that tally for the late Prince Khalid Abdullah’s operation.

Mahon added: “To say that Juddmonte and Prince Khalid have bred the two fastest stallions to ever sire 100 stakes winners is an incredible feat.”

With crack miler Baaeed now unbeaten in nine races – including the last five at Group One level – Shadwell’s star colt is poised to go up in trip for the Juddmonte International over 10 furlongs at York.

And given Derby winner Desert Crown is now expected to miss the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, some have suggested that the William Haggas-trained Baaeed should take his chance in the mile-and-a-half contest for his last run before embarking on a career as a stallion.

Baaeed and jockey Jim Crowley (left) made it nine unbeaten in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood
Baaeed and jockey Jim Crowley (left) made it nine unbeaten in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood (Adam Davy/PA)

But Mahon believes connections are right to tackle the Juddmonte International and the Champion Stakes – both over 10 furlongs – rather than going to France.

“The Juddmonte International and the Champion Stakes are going to be lovely races for him,” said Mahon.

“He’s the best around over a mile and you know he is going to get 10 furlongs. Why go looking to try and get him beat? There is no real reason for it.

“When you are as good as that over a mile, you would be a little bit nervous going over 12 furlongs. There is no point saying you wouldn’t. I can fully understand why they are sticking to a mile and 10 furlongs.”

Cachet set for mid-season break

George Boughey is targeting a return to the Rowley Mile with his 1000 Guineas heroine Cachet.

The daughter of Aclaim was a neck winner of the first fillies’ Classic of the season at Newmarket in May and was only beaten a head by Mangoustine in the French equivalent at ParisLongchamp.

She could only finish fifth behind Inspiral in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot last month, beaten six and a quarter lengths, and Boughey believes his stable star deserves a mid-season break before returning in the autumn, with the Sun Chariot Stakes earmarked as a possible race for her return.

Boughey said: “She is good. It is a long year. She peaked in the Breeders’ Cup last year and had a break in July as a two-year-old – and we are going to give her a break.

“She will probably come back for a Sun Chariot, possibly a Foret, possibly a Breeders’ Cup.

“She is in good shape, but you sort of sacrifice some targets now for bigger targets at the end of the year.”

While the one-mile Sun Chariot could see her clash with impressive Duke Of Cambridge winner Saffron Beach, who looks set to defend her crown, she could also face her Ascot conqueror again.

“It might be quite hard to beat Inspiral, watching her work the other morning,” Boughey added.

“But Cachet is a very good horse on the Rowley Mile and I think we will bring her back there.”

Sun Chariot plan for Saffron Beach

Saffron Beach will stay closer to home for the Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes on October 2 rather than head abroad.

Trainer Jane Chapple-Hyam had mooted a trip to Canada for the E.P. Taylor Stakes after her stable star got back to winning ways at Sandown on Saturday.

However, those plans have been shelved for the time being for the 1000 Guineas runner-up, with travel possibly on the agenda next year.

“The plan going forward will be to head to the Sun Chariot. It is her backyard and she has done extremely well there before having won there twice and finishing second there twice in four starts so she knows the track really well,” said Chapple-Hyam.

“She had excuses in the Oaks as it came up really heavy and she had a dirty lung after finishing down the field in the Falmouth Stakes.

“She finished second in the 1000 Guineas so we knew she had the ability to win more Group races and it was important getting more black type on Saturday. She was dominant in that last furlong and when Hollie (Doyle) asked her to go two out she shot clear which was nice to see.

“I think a race like the E.P. Taylor Stakes is really a race for four-year-olds.

“We feel she can travel next year for a race like that when she is that bit older.”

Champers Elysees bids to spark Sun Chariot celebrations

Johnny Murtagh has hailed “remarkable” filly Champers Elysees as she bids for a second successive Group One win, in the Kingdom of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket.

The trainer is fully appreciative of his charge’s rapid upward trajectory this term – graduating from a Curragh handicap win at the start of the campaign, to Listed glory and Group Three success before landing a top-level prize in the Matron Stakes last time out.

Champers Elysees subsequently changed hands and will sport the colours of Teruya Yoshida for the first time at Newmarket – and given it is only her fifth race this term, Murtagh remains hopeful the Elzaam filly still has something in the locker.

Champers Elysees and winning connections after her Matron success
Champers Elysees and winning connections after her Matron success (PA)

He said: “With a filly like her, you just don’t know when they’ll stop (improving).

“She’s been remarkable this year, starting off in a handicap, and she’s gone up to Group One company – winning all the way.

“This will be her fifth run of the year, so she hasn’t been over-raced.

“We know it’s a tough assignment and she has to travel, which she’s never done before, but she’s tough and genuine.

“Her preparation has gone very smoothly, and we’re looking forward to it.”

Peaceful is a Classic winner
Peaceful is a Classic winner (PA)

Champers Elysees had Irish 1,000 Guineas victor Peaceful back in second at Leopardstown, and Aidan O’Brien’s charge renews rivalry at Newmarket.

She is one of four previous Group One scorers in the race – along with the John Gosden-trained Nazeef, who landed the Falmouth Stakes back in July, Sir Michael Stoute’s Veracious and Billesdon Brook, representing Richard Hannon.

A shock 66-1 winner of the 1000 Guineas back in 2018, Billesdon Brook also sprang a 16-1 surprise in this race last year – and while she has yet to strike in five starts this term, Hannon believes Newmarket brings out the very best in his mare.

Billesdon Brook won the Sun Chariot last year
Billesdon Brook won the Sun Chariot last year (Tim Goode/PA)

He said: “Billesdon Brook loves it at Newmarket. She seems to run 10lb better there than she does on any other track.

“We didn’t think she would win the 1000 Guineas, which she did, and we didn’t think she would win the Kingdom of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes last year, and she did. I see no reason why she shouldn’t run a massive race.

“She comes alive at Newmarket. The straight mile seems to suit her a lot more than a round mile. She is working super at home. She doesn’t need much work because she is quite a keen-going sort – you really don’t have to do too much with her.”

Cloak Of Spirits (left) was a winner at the track last week
Cloak Of Spirits (left) was a winner at the track last week (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Hannon has a second string to his bow in the mile event, which forms part of the Qipco British Champions Series, in Cloak Of Spirits – who returned to winning form in a Listed race at the track last week.

He said: “Cloak of Spirits deserved that win in the Rosemary Stakes last time out. She is tough and a really sweet filly. Sheikh Mohammed Obaid has said to give her one more run.

“She is in good form, she loves the track at Newmarket, and she is just coming good. She came good this time last year, so I am hopeful she can run a big race.”

Comparing his two hopefuls, Hannon added: “Billesdon Brook looks like she is 15 in comparison to some three-year-olds. She is massive, very strong and robust, whereas Cloak Of Spirits is quite slight and elegant.”

Terebellum is one of three runners for Godolphin
Terebellum is one of three runners for Godolphin (Edward Whitaker/PA)

Godolphin have three runners in the race, with the Gosden-trained Terebellum, Saeed bin Suroor’s Final Song and Half Light – who represents Henri-Alex Pantall and was supplemented for the race on Monday.

Feliciana De Vega, who is making her seasonal bow for Ralph Beckett, William Jarvis’ Lady Bowthorpe and the Amanda Perrett-trained Lavender’s Blue complete the line-up.

Matron victor Champers Elysees added to Sun Chariot field

Johnny Murtagh’s Champers Elysees and the Henri-Alex Pantall-trained Half Light have been supplemented for Saturday’s Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket.

Murtagh’s filly provided the former Irish champion jockey with his first Group One win on Irish Champions Weekend when a ready winner of the Matron Stakes and she will maintain her partnership with Colin Keane.

Following her breakthrough top-level win, Champers Elysees has been bought by Teruya Yoshida, a major player in the Japanese bloodstock industry who saw his colours carried to victory in this race by Sahpresa in 2011.

“We’ve been happy with her since the Matron and this looks the next logical step,” said Murtagh.

“We supplemented this morning. It’s going to be tough race – it’s a Group One they are always hard to win – but we’ve been happy with our filly since the Matron.

“Colin Keane is going to ride her again and we’re looking forward to it.

“For Mr Yoshida to be involved in the yard is a big thing. He runs a huge operation and only buys the best. For her to be good enough for him is great, and it’s also great he’s going to leave her in training with us next year.

“The stable is going from strength to strength and we need those high-profile owners in our yard to elevate us to the next level.”

Half Light, owned by Godolphin, was beaten narrowly by Mark Johnston’s Dark Vision in a Group Two in Germany last time out.

Last year’s winner Billesdon Brook is also one of 17 fillies left in the contest.

She is one of two for Richard Hannon, who could also run Cloak Of Spirits, who got back to winning ways last week having earlier in the season finished placed in the 1000 Guineas.

Billesdon Brook won the Sun Chariot last year
Billesdon Brook won the Sun Chariot last year (Tim Goode/PA)

John Gosden has left in Terebellum and Nazeef, while Sir Michael Stoute’s Veracious is set for her third appearance in the race.

Roger Varian’s Daahyeh, last seen finishing second at the Breeders’ Cup, is another notable entry, but Hugo Palmer took out Powerful Breeze, another filly who has not run this season.

Jessica Harrington could run Albigna while Aidan O’Brien’s Peaceful, winner of the Irish 1,000 Guineas, is sure to be among the favourites although she has a length and a quarter to find with Champers Elysees from the Matron.