Qatar Bloodstook Richmond Stakes
Group 2, Goodwood 14:35
£75,000 added,
2yo only,
6f, Class 1  
Thursday 30th July 2015


1 Shalaa 11/8F
2 Tasleet 7/1
3 Steady Pace 4/1
NR: Air Force Blue (USA)
8 ran Distances: 2¾l, 1¼l, 1½l
TIME 1m 10.82s (slow by 1.02s)

Shalaa puts in a deeply impressive performance to beat Tasleet

© Racehorse Photos


An excellent week for those connected with the sponsors of the Qatar Goodwood Festival got better when Shalaa won the Group Two Qatar Richmond Stakes for two-year-olds.

Ridden by Frankie Dettori in the colours of Sheikh Joann's Al Shaqab Racing, Shalaa defied a 3lb penalty for winning at Newmarket's July meeting, and scored impressively, winning by two and three-quarters of a length and one and a quarter lengths from Tasleet and Steady Pace.

Dettori said:  "We think the world of him and he proved it today with a penalty. He has lots of speed, a good head on him and he can quicken off it - what more do you want? I am happy to take a lead but there isn't a two-year-old fast enough to lead him so I have to make my own way home.

"He is getting a lot better. I have been riding him at home a lot and he is in a good place now - he was a bit hot and a bit temperamental but he enjoys it now and it makes one hell of a difference. I would say something like the Morny on good ground would be the target."

Shalaa, whose victory added to that of Al Shaqab's Galileo Gold in Tuesday's Group Two Qatar Vintage Stakes, was widely quoted for next year's QIPCO 2,000 Guineas, but trainer John Gosden views him as a sprinter, not a miler. Gosden said: "He is very quick - at home he is very relaxed and will sit behind another horse and go to sleep, but when the races are on and the gate opens he says 'I'm off'. He has so much speed he has burned them all off before Frankie has to move. He's a very fast two-year-old.

"It's a great sight to see him cruising while other jockeys in behind are working away, but he's learned to relax, and when he won his maiden he didn't relax. Thank goodness we resisted the temptation to go to Royal Ascot for the Coventry Stakes because he wasn't ready for that mentally, and yet he is now.

"He reminds me of Oasis Dream - he's that type of horse. We could go for the Prix Morny, unless Harry [Herbert, racing manager to Al Shaqab] wants to make a speech in which case we would go for the Gimcrack Stakes. If we go for the Morny we would want nice, fast ground and not the Deauville of last year which was beyond bottomless. The Morny and Middle Park would be obvious targets, but we won't take him up to seven furlongs, because he's fast.

"We'll worry about next year when it comes, but I don't see him as a miler. I see him staying at six furlongs and that great new race, the Commonwealth Cup [at Royal Ascot] being a big target for him next year. He enjoys sprinting, so let him sprint."

Shalaa was given quotes for the 2016 Commonwealth Cup of 8/1 by MansionBet and 10/1 by William Hill.

Listed winner Tasleet is likely to head to York's Ebor Festival next month after finishing second to Shalaa, beaten two and three quarter lengths.

"Tasleet has run another cracking race," said Richard Hills, assistant racing manager to owner Hamdan Al Maktoum. "The winner is a very good horse and we are really pleased with how our horse has performed.

"I think he will go to York next for either the Gimcrack or the sales race - he is entered in both."

Steady Pace, representing Saeed bin Suroor and Godolphin, was a length and a quarter further back in third.

John Ferguson, bloodstock advisor to Sheikh Mohammed, commented: "We are delighted with Steady Pace. He has run another very good race and will probably step up to seven furlongs next time.

"We had to drop Log Out Island (7th) in today to help him settle. We will probably bring him back to five furlongs because two furlongs out, William (Buick) felt he had a chance, but he did not get home."

AutoUpdating 640x85 Gif

Qatar Bloodstock Richmond Stakes (Group 2)
£200,000 added, 2yo only, 6f, Class 1
8 ran
Going: Good

Pos Dr D Horse SP Jockey Weight Trainer Age
1st (6) Shalaa (IRE) 11/8f L Dettori
J H M Gosden 2
2nd (7) Tasleet 7/1 P Hanagan
W J Haggas 2
3rd (1) Steady Pace 4/1 James Doyle
S bin Suroor 2
4th (2) Adventurous (IRE) 14/1 J Fanning
M Johnston 2
5th (5) ½ Elronaq 12/1 Dane O'Neill
C Hills 2
6th (9) Riflescope (IRE) 11/1 S De Sousa
M Johnston 2
7th (4) Log Out Island (IRE) 6/1 W Buick
R Hannon 2
8th (3) Barbarous Relic (USA) 33/1 Jim Crowley
K R Burke 2
NR (8) Air Force Blue (USA) 11/4 Non Runner
A P O'Brien 2

AutoUpdating 640x85 Gif