Pedigrees to watch out for at the Craven meeting

John Ingles identifies some well-bred horses to look for among the entries for Newmarket’s first meeting of the season.


Tuesday

Fillies take center stage on the first day of the Craven meeting at Newmarket which features the Nell Gwyn Stakes as a trial for the 1000 Guineas. The betting on that classic is currently headed by Frankel’s unbeaten daughter Inspiral, winner of the Fillies’ Mile on her final start last season. Another daughter of Frankel, Homeless Songsadvanced her Guineas claims when an impressive winner of the 1000 Guineas Trial at Leopardstown for Dermot Weld last weekend and the sire holds a potentially strong hand in the Nell Gwyn line-up too.

Just about the best of Frankel’s three Nell Gwyn entries on Timeform weight-adjusted is ratings is Godolphin’s Wild Beauty who was fifth in the Fillies’ Mile after beating the future Breeders’ Cup winner Pizza Bianca in the Grade 1 Natalma Stakes at Woodbine. The Sweet Solera Stakes winner Majestic Glory and the Oh So Sharp Stakes third Perfect News are Frankel’s other daughters in the Nell Gwyn, and both have the option of the European Free Handicap earlier on the same card.

Aidan O’Brien’s Nell Gwyn entry Toy has finished second in both her starts at the Curragh but has the most eye-catching pedigree on offer as a sister to classic winners Gleneagles, Marvelous and Joan of Arc to name just three of several at least smart brothers and sisters. The daughter of Galileo is unlikely to show what she can really do until stepping up to at least a mile, however.

The fillies’ maiden over a mile later on Tuesday has a number of well-bred types among the entries. Those that have already run and shown ability include Juddmonte’s Crenellea daughter of Kingman out of a half-sister to St Leger winner Logician; Flamenco Fan, a half-sister to Middle Park winner Charming Thought; and Queen of Comedy, another Kingman filly and a half-sister to Prix de Diane winner Star of Seville. The last-named is also entered in the following day’s maiden over seven furlongs.

Among the newcomers, those who take the eye on breeding include Pawapuri, an Oaks entry for William Haggas and Andrew Oppenheimer. She’s out of a sister to 2000 Guineas winner Footstepsinthesand, while her half-brother Peter The Great won the Wood Ditton at this meeting last year. Pawapuri is by her owner’s Derby/Arc winner Golden Horn who’s a half-brother to the dam of one of John & Thady Gosden’s entries Auyounia daughter of Siyouni.

Cheveley Park Stud have a couple of newcomers entered up, including Foxtrota Le Havre half-sister to Bashkirova, a useful filly who won her first three starts last season over a mile, and a granddaughter of 1000 Guineas winner Russian Rhythm.

Wednesday

It’s the colts’ turn to warm up for the 2000 Guineas in Wednesday’s Craven Stakes but there are a couple of other races on the card to keep a close eye on that could easily throw up some good three-year-olds. Godolphin have plenty of options in the novice over a mile and a quarter for horses that have not run more than once, a contest Charlie Appleby has won in three of the last four years.

Franz Strauss, Aldous Huxley and New London have each won their only starts, the latter pair being sons of Dubawi who has such a good record with his runners at Newmarket. Aldous Huxley is a brother to the smart Al Nefud, runner-up in a Group 2 in Dubai earlier this year, while Derby entry New London is out of a half-sister to St Leger winner Masked Marvel.

Potential Godolphin debutants here include Ruling Dynastywho’s closely related to the recent Queen’s Prize winner Bandinelli and Dubai Sheema Classic winner Old Persian; State Event, by Shamardal out of 1000 Guineas and Irish/Yorkshire Oaks winner Blue Bunting; and the gelded Ottoman Fleeta 425,000 guineas yearling son of Sea The Stars who is out of a half-sister to the top-class Lockinge winner Keltos.

Another interesting newcomer on pedigree is Heathen for Ed Dunlop; he’s by Lope de Vega out of Irish Oaks winner Great Heavens, a sister to Nathaniel.

The Craven meeting’s main race of interest from a pedigree point of view is usually the Wood Ditton for unraced horses over the Rowley Mile. Ruling Dynasty, State Event and Heathen all have options here too, but there are several other likely types on pedigree.

John & Thady Gosden, successful with Peter The Great last year, have sole entry Francesco Clemente in the ‘Sottsass’ colors of Peter Brant’s White Birch Farm. He’s a Dubawi half-brother to Abingdon, a smart mile and a half performer and one of the last good fillies to race in the Ballymacoll Stud colors from the family of Hellenic and Islington.

A couple more Godolphin colts who could be unleashed here are High Renaissance and Secret State. High Renaissance, by Farhh, is closely related to Blair House, winner of the Group 1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan, and out of a sister to the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes winner Poet’s Voice. Secret State, who cost 525,000 guineas a year, is another son of Dubawi and out of Jacqueline Quest who was demoted after being first past the post in the 1000 Guineas. That makes Secret State a brother to Charlie Fellowes’ useful filly up to a mile Onassis and a half-brother to Godolphin’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner Line of Duty.

Another interesting one to keep an eye on for the future is Morning Post for Sir Michael Stoute. He’s by Time Test and a close relative to the same connections’ Bay Bridge who did nothing but improve as a three-year-old last season and looks capable of making his mark in pattern company this year.

Thursday

Thursday’s Alex Scott Maiden Stakes over seven furlongs features some newcomers with slightly speedier pedigrees as you’d expect. They include Shadwell’s Morhom who counts Jersey Stakes winner Mustajeeb among his winning siblings – he’s trained by Marcus Tregoning – while the Stoute entry here is Morning Suna Muhaarar half-brother to the smart Logo Hunter whose wins in Ireland last year included a couple of five-furlong listed contests.

On pedigree at least, it’s a surprise to see Out From Under being persevered with at seven furlongs. The Dubawi colt’s three runs last year for Roger Charlton were all at that trip but he’s a full brother to last year’s Queen’s Vase winner Kemari and out of the St Simon Stakes winner Koora, a half-sister to St Leger Milan, so he’s bred to need a good deal further than this from now on.

It’s still very early days for the two-year-olds but there are some well-related youngsters who could make their debuts in the novice. James Tate has a couple of interesting types in Kingdom of Dreams and Royal Mariner.

By Oasis Dream, responsible for last year’s top two-year-old Native Trail who is entered in Wednesday’s Craven, 100,000 guinea yearling Kingdom of Dreams is a half-brother to numerous winners, the best of them being the very smart Bow Creek whose wins included the Celebration Mile. Royal Mariner is bred on very similar lines to high-class sprinter Ten Sovereigns; he’s out of a half-sister to the Middle Park and July Cup winner and also shares that one’s sire No Nay Never.

Roger Varian’s entry Tajalla is bred to be speedy, as he’s by first-season sire Kessaar, winner of the Mill Reef Stakes, out of a half-sister to the Windsor Castle and Flying Childers winner Ardad who did well with his own first crop of two-year- olds last year which were headed by Middle Park winner Perfect Power.


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