Prohibit wins the King's Stand Stakes
Prohibit wins the King's Stand Stakes

Click above to watch Prohibit winning the King’s Stand Stakes (Gr1)

(Image : Perth Now - Footage : At The Races UK)

“…and especially for South African Sprinter, Sweet Sanette.”

Bill Oppenheim
Bill Oppenheim

Bill Oppenheim

Thoroughbred Daily NewsThe Coolmore legions had good reason to be satisfied with the results from Ascot’s opening day yesterday: they had bought into Canford Cliffs (Tagula) at the end of last year, which looked a pretty smart move after he stopped the 6-year-old wonder mare Goldikova (Anabaa) from notching her 14th Group 1/Grade I win in the meet’s opening race - the G1 Queen Anne Stakes - run over Ascot’s straight mile. Then Frankel, by Coolmore’s world number one, Galileo, scraped home in the one mile G1 St James’s Palace Stakes, run on the round course, while Coolmore’s Zoffany, by the Juddmonte stallion Dansili, upgraded his stallion prospects by running a bang-up second. Then, to finish off the day, their investment in a second Juddmonte stallion paid off when Power (Oasis Dream) finished strongly to give Aidan O’Brien his sixth win in the G2 Coventry Stakes. All in all, a pretty satisfactory opening day; though the weight of expectation which Frankel carried yesterday is transferred today to Coolmore’s So You Think (High Chaparral), as short as 2-5 last night to win today’s G1 Prince of Wales’s Stakes.

The G1 King’s Stand Stakes over 5 furlongs was nearly poached by the Highlands-bred South African filly Sweet Sanette (Jallad) despite her near scratching after an accident in the preliminaries. She led the best sprinters around a merry dance for every yard except the final twenty five, and you’d have to say this was some compliment to the quality of sprinters in this country.

Formerly owned by Wally Brits and trained by Roy Magner, Sweet Sanette was a very good, but by no means great, sprinter before she left South Africa for Hong Kong, and one can’t help wondering what J J The Jet Plane would have done to this field which included Australia’s second best sprinter, Star Witness.

Even Sweet Sanette’s most ardent supporters would not suggest she was in JJ’s league, and while JJ remains the highest rated male sprinter in the world right now, he can only aspire to the No.1 spot if he can cross swords with the current Australian star, Black Caviar.

It was also a good day for Prince Khalid Abdullah’s Juddmonte operation. Frankel may only have scraped home in the St James’s Palace Stakes, but his record now reads seven wins from seven starts, and his master trainer - the newly knighted (and slightly embarrassed, as usual) Sir Henry Cecil - will now go off and think about what he wants to ask his colt to do next. Henry mentioned the G1 Juddmonte International (sponsored by the owner) over an extended 10 furlongs at York, even as the wise guys were again trying to talk him into shortening him up to six furlongs. There’s a reason he’s been champion trainer nine times, and it’s not because he listens to the riders in the stands. Besides the fact a runner by their own stallion, Dansili, gave Frankel an almighty scare, Juddmonte could also be pleased that their stallion Oasis Dream - arguably the number two sire in Europe now behind only Galileo - had two winners on opening day: Prohibit in the G1 King’s Stand Stakes over five furlongs; and Power in the G2 Coventry, always the first really important 2-year-old race of the year.

The racing, as always, was fiercely competitive, and there were a few noteworthy performances in defeat - none more so than Goldikova’s loss to Canford Cliffs in the Queen Anne Stakes. Like Zenyatta, she went down fighting, and has now won 16 races, with four seconds and two thirds in her 23 career starts - only once unplaced, in a bog in the G1 Prix d’Ispahan, in her first start of 2009. Prince Khalid’s Cityscape, now a 5-year-old and by Selkirk, ran a lifetime best, finishing third, less than two lengths behind Goldikova; and Godolphin’s 6-year-old Rio de la Plata (Rahy) also ran a good race, in fourth.

Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News

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