JUDDMONTE INTERNATIONAL STAKES (Group 1)
York, Turf, 2092m
20 August 2014
The regally-bred Australia (Galileo) won his third consecutive Group 1 with a smooth success in the Juddmonte International at York. Beautifully settled at the back, the dual Derby winner came with a well-timed run towards the stands’ side to head his rivals with ease and was pushed out by Joseph O’Brien to score by two lengths. The Grey Gatsby (Mastercraftsman) proved the form of his last start in the Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris to be all wrong with a fine second, with four-year-old Telescope (Galileo) just over two lengths back in third.
“He was ready for a racecourse gallop,” said Aidan O’Brien afterwards. “His weight had risen alarmingly in the last three weeks but the lads at home were very happy. He was a lot of kilos up on his Derby run - 15-20 kilos heavier - and that’s a lot of weight. Joseph said that leaving the paddock in the Derby he felt like he was a two or three-year-old, but today leaving he felt like a five-year-old. There’s such prize money here and it’s such a prestigious race that it’s very hard to gallop him at a racecourse rather than bring him here. We had in our head to come here and then Leopardstown, to the Irish Champion Stakes, if everything went well.”
Part-owner Michael Tabor added: “You go for a Derby because there’s nothing like a Derby, but the truth of matter is taking him to a mile and a quarter shows the speed he’s got, and Joseph said ‘you take him back to a mile and it would be perfect for him’. You’d have to say he has to be up there with the very best. In a perfect world he’ll go for Leopardstown and maybe the English Champion. Maybe one more after that, I don’t think so, but we’ll play out one race at a time.”
As has been well documented, Australia is by a Group 1 Derby winner, Galileo, out of a Group 1 Oaks winner, Ouija Board (Cape Cross), who has produced four winners from her first four foals. He was a 525,000gns purchase at Tattersalls October Sale by Demi O’Byrne. He was bred by Stanley House Stud, who have owned several generations of the family which has also produced the Arlington Million winner Teleprompter and Group 1 winners Ibn Bey, Roseate Tern and Red Bloom.
Trainer Kevin Ryan was thrilled with the run of The Grey Gatsby, and said: “We’ve no excuses; the winner is a fabulous horse. The way he’s [The Grey Gatsby] finished it looks like he’ll get a mile and a half, which opens up plenty of options. Hopefully he’ll stay in training next year.”
Harry Herbert of Telescope’s owners Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, said of their colt: “He needs a mile and a half, it’s as simple as that. He’s run very well over a mile and a quarter behind two Derby winners. It’s up to Sir Michael but I would have thought the Breeders’ Cup would be the main objective now.”
Extract from European Bloodstock News