Saturday Spotlight

Larkspur Run/Magic Carpet

Larkspur Run

3 f Shamardal – Aspen by Exceed And Excel

Trainer: James Cummings

Race: Thoroughbred Club Stakes (Gr 3, 1200m)


Magic Carpet

2 f Lonhro – Aspen by Exceed And Excel

Trainer: James Cummings

Race: Debutant Stakes (Listed, 1000m)


Sometimes you have to wait patiently for the stakes-winning bus and then two of them come along at once. For Darley mare Aspen (Exceed And Excel), she could go from the dam of a single winner, to a dual stakes-winning producer come shortly after 2pm today. 


Her first foal Larkspur Run (Shamardal) has twice hit the crossbar in stakes company having started her career with back-to-back juvenile wins. 


After running second to Zouzarella (Zoustar) in the Atlantic Jewel Stakes (Listed, 1200m) last month, she then played the bridesmaid again when narrowly defeated by Seradess (Astern) in the Scarborough Stakes (Gr 3, 1200m) on September 24, and is hoping it will be third time lucky when she contests the Thoroughbred Club Stakes (Gr 3, 1200m) at Caulfield today. 


Larkspur Run is Aspen’s first foal, while her second foal, two-year-old filly Magic Carpet (Lonhro), makes her debut in the royal blue Godolphin silks in the card-opening Debutant Stakes (Listed, 1000m) in a field of 12 juveniles. 


A two-time winner, Aspen is the daughter of Gimcrack Stakes (Listed, 1100m) and dual Group 2 winner Portillo (Red Ransom), with Aspen a half-sister to Surround Stakes (Gr 2, 1400m) winner Ghisoni (Lonhro) and the stakes-placed Andermatt (Snitzel), while granddam Snowdrift (Polish Precedent) has produced three stakes winners, with Portillo joined by Group 1 winner Snowland (Snippets) and dual-stakes-winner-turned-sire Snippetson (Snippets). 


Aspen produced a third filly, by Lonhro (Octagonal), last year and is due to foal to Blue Point (Shamardal) for what will be a three-quarter sibling to Larkspur Run.