Features

Lion Roars In Middle Park Stakes

The consistent colt, who has finished in the first three in each of his ten career starts, adopted his customary front-running role under Joe Fanning, with the short-priced, Godolphin-owned favourite Blue Point (Shamardal), who had beaten The Last Lion by four and three quarter lengths in the Gimcrack Stakes (Gr 2, 6f) on 20 August at York, settling in midfield under William Buick.

As the field approached the final two furlongs, The Last Lion kicked for home and had enough in reserve to fend off the late challenge of Blue Point by three quarters of a length, with Mehmas (Acclamation), who will now retire to stand at Tally-Ho Stud in Ireland, a further two and a quarter lengths behind in third.

There was also an upset in the Cheveley Park Stakes (Gr 1, 6f) at Newmarket on Saturday as the Aidan O’Brien-trained Brave Anna (2 f War Front – Liscanna by Sadler’s Wells) belied her 25/1 price tag in a tight finish.

Last-start Prix Morny (Gr 1, 1200m) winner Lady Aurelia (Scat Daddy) was sent off the 4-6 favourite for trainer Wesley Ward and jockey Frankie Dettori, and she showed blistering speed to lead the field for much of the race.

However, on the ascent to the line, Lady Aurelia began to tire, and the O’Brien-trained pair Brave Anna and Roly Poly (War Front) came through to fight out the finish, with the former prevailing by a short-head, with the beaten favourite a further two lengths behind in third. Lady Aurelia was discovered to have bled during the race.

Godolphin’s Best Of Days (2 c Azamour – Baisse by High Chaparral) ran out a brave winner of the Royal Lodge Stakes (Gr 2, 1m) at Newmarket on Saturday.

Trained by Hugo Palmer, the colt lost his unbeaten record in the Acomb Stakes (Gr 3, 7f) at York on 17 August but showed a determined attitude to get his head back in front under James Doyle.

He came under pressure just inside the three furlongs but picked up well to deny the Aidan O’Brien-trained The Anvil (Galileo) by a neck, with the Lloyd Williams-owned Arcada (Rip Van Winkle) and Sea Fox (Kodiac) dead-heating for third.

French raider Spain Burg (2 f Sageburg – Spain Blues by Anabaa Blue) lowered the colours of 4-9 favourite Fair Eva (Frankel) in the Rockfel Stakes (Gr 2, 7f) at Newmarket on Friday.

The Xavier Thomas-Demeaulte-trained filly travelled strongly into contention from off the pace in the hands of Frankie Dettori as Pat Smullen worked hard to get Fair Eva into a share of the lead.

No sooner had Fair Eva hit the front inside the final furlong than Spain Burg swept down the outside to win going away by a length and a quarter, with the front-running Miss Infinity (Rock Of Gibraltar) a further neck behind in third.

Aidan O’Brien’s Capri (2 c Galileo – Dialafara by Anabaa) ran out a convincing winner of the Beresford Stakes (Gr 2, 1m) at the Curragh on Sunday.

The colt travelled strongly in behind the leaders and finished strongly to lead home an O’Brien-trained trifecta, beating Yucatan (Galileo) by three quarters of a length, with the same distance back to Exemplar (Galileo) in third place.

O’Brien suggested in a post-race interview that all three would come under consideration for the Racing Post Trophy (Gr 1, 1m) at Doncaster on 22 October.

Larchmont Lad (2 c Footstepsinthesand – Fotini by King’s Best) showed a willing attitude when landing the Tattersalls Stakes (registered as the Somerville Stakes) (Gr 3, 7f) at Newmarket on Thursday.

The Richard Hannon-trained colt raced up with the pace throughout and repelled several challengers in the closing stages to win going away by three quarters of a length from Aidan O’Brien’s Whitecliffsofdover (War Front), with just a short-head back to Sir Dancealot (Sir Prancealot) in third.

The Dermot Weld-trained and Aga Khan-owned Eziyra (2 f Teofilo – Eytarna by Dubai Destination) won the Weld Park Stakes (Gr 3, 7f) at the Curragh on Sunday.

The daughter of Teofilo (Galileo) moved strongly into the lead a furlong and a half out and, despite showing signs of greenness, she stretched two lengths clear of Godolphin’s Grecian Light (Shamardal), with a further four and a quarter lengths back to Legitimus (Lawman) in third.

 

Three-year-olds
French raider Silver Step (3 f Silver Frost – Negra Del Oro by Danehill Dancer) held on bravely to win the Premio Elena e Sergio Cumani (Gr 3, 1600m) at Milan on Sunday.

The Pia Brandt-trained filly was given a confident ride by Cristian Demuro, who bided his time in rear as Dry Your Eyes (Ramonti) set strong fractions on the front-end.

As the field straightened for home, Demuro delivered Silver Step between rivals to lead approaching the final 100 metres, but she had to dig in close home to fend off the challenge of Okana (Zamindar) to win by a neck, with Show Day (Shamardal) just a short-neck further behind in third place.

The progressive Dal Harraild (3 g Champs Elysees – Dalvina by Grand Lodge) ran out a convincing winner of the Godolphin Stakes (Listed, 1m4f) at Newmarket on Friday.

The William Haggas-trained gelding was sent straight to the lead by jockey Pat Cosgrave and he kept up a strong gallop all the way to the line to beat Barsanti (Champs Elysees) by two and a quarter lengths, with Star Storm (Sea The Stars) a further three and three quarter lengths adrift in third.

Haggas hinted in a post-race interview that next year’s Melbourne Cup (Gr 1, 3200m) could be a long term aim for the son of Champs Elysees (Danehill).

 

Older horses
Nightflower (4 f Dylan Thomas – Night Of Magic by Peintre Celebre) secured back to back wins in the Preis von Europa (Gr 1, 2400m) at Cologne on Sunday.

The Peter Schiergen-trained filly, who beat Sirius (Dashing Blade) by two lengths to land the Group One 12 months ago, was never far away from the steady pace set by Kasalla (Soldier Hollow).

Upon entering the home straight, jockey Andrasch Starke switched Nightflower across the track to the stands rail, and she surged ahead inside the final 75 metres to win going away from Melbourne Cup contender and Australian Bloodstock-owned Red Cardinal (Montjeu) by three quarters of a length, with Kasalla just a short-head further away in third.

French raider Waikika (5 m Whipper – Fruhling Feuer by Green Tune) was a narrow winner of the Premio Vittorio di Capua (Gr 1, 1600m) at Milan on Sunday.

Trained at Deauville by Yann Barberot, who had never before saddled a Group One winner, Waikika was restrained just off the pace by Gerald Mosse, who produced the mare to lead approaching the 400 metres.

The Charles Hills-trained Jallota (Rock Of Gibraltar) was flying home at the death having met trouble in running, but Waikika held on bravely in the closing stages to win by a neck, with the favourites Kaspersky (Footstepsinthesand) a further three quarters of a length behind in third.

Cougar Mountain (5 h Fastnet Rock – Descant by Nureyev) came home strongly to land the Joel Stakes (Gr 2, 1m) at Newmarket on Friday.

The five-year-old entire was ridden patiently in rear by jockey Ryan Moore as Gifted Master (Kodiac) set strong fractions on the front-end under Pat Smullen.

The Aidan O’Brien-trained Cougar Mountain moved smoothly into contention and put the race to bed with a smart turn of foot just inside the final two furlongs, beating Gifted Master by three and three quarter lengths, with Nathra (Iffraaj) a further two and a quarter lengths adrift in third.

Aidan O’Brien enjoyed further Group-race success last week, courtesy of The Happy Prince (4 c Rip Van Winkle – Maid To Dream by Oasis Dream) in the Renaissance Stakes (Gr 3, 6f) at the Curragh on Sunday.

The colt contested the lead throughout and kept on determinedly in the final furlong to beat Flight Risk (Teofilo) by three quarters of a length, with British raider La Rioja (Hellvelyn) just a nose further behind in third.