July ReviewPosted : August 6th, 2019
A month that saw us add 15 winners to our seasonal tally was marred by a tragic and fatal injury to our flagbearer Beat The Bank, who broke down a stride before crossing the line in front in the Group 2 Summer Mile at Ascot.
The winner of nine races and over £600,000 in prize-money, his form outside of Group 1 company read nine wins from ten starts, including five Group 2 successes, but he had gone so close to a big one when runner-up in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot in June and if any horse ever deserved a top-level success, it was him. He was a huge favourite of the late Chairman’s and will be sorely missed by all the team at Kingsclere, as well as his sizeable number of fans.
Earlier that day, Pivoine had provided King Power with a notable success with victory in the John Smith’s Cup at York under Rob Hornby. A winner of a valuable handicap on his only previous outing at the track, he looks worth his place back in Group level and he is currently in Chicago in preparation for a tilt at the Grade 1 Arlington Million.
Fox Chairman looks another on his way to better things, the son of Kingman building on his second in the Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot to score readily in the Listed Steventon Stakes at Newbury under Silvestre De Sousa. He will now have a break before returning for an exciting autumn campaign.
Shadn was a smart winner on debut in June and showed plenty of promise when midfield in the Queen Mary just a fortnight later. With that experience under her belt, she showed improved form to take the Listed Rose Bowl Stakes at Newbury, hitting the line strongly in the hands of Oisin Murphy. She is a talented filly and will stay further.
A smart two year old last term, Flashcard had signaled his turn was near when runner-up on his penultimate start at Newmarket, but nevertheless it was exciting to see him win as well as he did at Ascot next time, quickening nicely under Oisin Murphy and coming clear to win impressively. The handicapper has had his say, but he could yet play a major role in a big handicap this season.
Goodwood winner Be More looked to have plenty on her plate when turning into the Chester straight with all her rivals in front of her, but she finished very strongly under Will Carver to get up in the final strides. From a wonderful family, she looks to have plenty more to offer and, given her liking for soft ground, she may be capable of gaining black-type in the autumn.
Perfect Illusion hadn’t tasted success since his first two starts as a three year old, so it was a relief to see him back in the winners’ enclosure, winning at Brighton under Will Carver, who has been riding plenty of winners of late. He has since been sold to race on in Australia
Tribal Craft’s Pontefract success in the middle of the month was notable for its ease, David Probert coming home 20 lengths clear on the daughter of Mastercraftsman. The pair didn’t have the run of things at the Qatar Goodwood Festival, but she is an exciting type for middle-distance handicaps in the weeks ahead and could make her mark in Stakes company.
Though it felt like an age before Imperial Act got her head in front for the first time, she is getting the hang of things and her Bath success, another winner for Will Carver, was her third from her last five outings. She remains on a workable mark, as does Pass The Gin has been kept busy this term and following a strong of good efforts in defeat, she gained a deserved success by the narrowest of margins at Chester, the scene of her sole previous win at two, in the hands of Will Cox.
Marie Perrault produced a memorable debut ride when scoring on Stay Forever at Sandown Park. Dropped out last and some way behind the main field, the pair made relentless progress up the hill, hitting the front on the line. Hopefully that win, a first at the eleventh time of asking, will be the catalyst fur further success.
Forseti hadn’t been at his best on his last couple of starts, but a drop to selling grade did the trick, winning comfortably under Josh Bryan.
In addition to Shadn’s Listed success, there were some very promising performances from the two year olds.
Grove Ferry recorded a second consecutive win in game fashion at Epsom under David Probert, the form of which has since been franked by a wide-margin win for the third. A half-brother to a Group winner and out of the Group 1-winning mare Rebelline, he is an exciting prospect.
Kameko has been showing plenty of ability at home and it was very pleasing to see him make a winning debut at Sandown Park under Oisin Murphy. The son of Kitten’s Joy looks to have a very bright future, as does Berlin Tango, who ran right away with a novice at Ffos Las and whose pedigree suggests there is a good bit more to come.
Away from the racecourse things have also been busy, with a hotly contested Bake Off and Dog Show for Racing Staff Week, our annual Summer Party for owners and staff, and a charity evening in aid of the Battens Disease Family Association which featured a parade of horses and tours of the yard and raised £6,500 for the cause.