Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes
|Group 1, Newbury 15:20
1m, Class 1
1 Baaeed 4/9F
2 Real World 5/1
3 Chindit 20/1
9 ran Distances: 3¼l, 1¾l, ¾l
Time: 1m 35.71s (fast by 0.29s)
The best horse in the world?? Baaeed puts on a brilliant display to run away with the @AlShaqabRacing Lockinge Stakes for William Haggas, @JimCrowley1978 and @ShadwellRacing @NewburyRacing pic.twitter.com/10ip4iwmB8 https://t.co/zv86ORH5oi via @RacingBetter— RacingBetter (@RacingBetter) May 14, 2022
The WIlliam Haggas-trained Baaeed put in a stunning performance on his seasonal reappearance to run away with a good quality renewal.
Unbeaten in seven starts now, there was never any doubt about the outcome as he oozed class under regular jockey Jim Crowley.
He settled well, travelled easily behind a moderate pace and then produced a scintillating turn of foot, winning by three and a quarter lengths.
Godolphin's Real World ran on well for second and Richard Hannon's Chindit, who took them along in front for much of the race, stuck on nicely once headed to grab a creditable third.
The triumph was enough to inspire tentative comparisons with the great Frankel, who won the Lockinge in 2012 on his way to an undefeated career that saw him head to stud as one of the greatest Flat horses of all time.
One such comparison was made by former jockey Philip Robinson, whose Lockinge victory aboard Rakti in 2005 still remains the fastest ever seen.
“He’s the best horse I’ve seen since Frankel, pure and simple,” he said of Baaeed.
“I’ve thought he’s a very good horse for some time and he was seriously impressive. I’ve been impressed with him before in all of his previous runs and it’s there to be seen now.
“How much he can do from here is anybody’s guess. He’s a lovely, lovely horse all round and he must be a pleasure to be involved with.
“I think one only comes along that’s as good as this about every 10 years.”
Mick Kinane steered Hawk Wing to a Lockinge victory considered by many to be one of the most impressive ever witnessed and the riding great is looking forward to seeing Baaeed tested both at Royal Ascot and potentially over a longer trip in the future.
“He looks a very exciting horse going forward. If he keeps on improving then he’s going to be very hard to beat through the year and you have to look forward to him running in the Queen Anne at Ascot,” he said.
“We know what can happen with horses at any given time and nothing is for certain, but you would imagine he will be peaking at Ascot and it will be very exciting to watch.
“These great milers are always exciting to ride, they are explosive and always have a great turn of pace and it’s the best fun you’ll have on any horse if you get a very good miler.”
Of the prospect of Baaeed following in the footsteps of Frankel and stepping up to 10 furlongs, he added: “I would say a mile and a quarter later in the year would be well within his scope. He has pace and power and it would be a bonus if he was to step up later in the year.
“If a horse can win a race like the Juddmonte International, it’s a mile two and 100 yards, they have to get an extended mile and a quarter to do that you know.
“He looks like he’ll be a very valuable stallion prospect, so it’s very exciting for connections.”
Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes
(British Champions Series) (Group 1)
£350,000 guaranteed, 4yo plus, 1m, Class 1
POS. (DRAW) DIST HORSE AGE WGT TRAINER JOCKEY SP
1 (3) Baaeed 4 9-0 William Haggas Jim Crowley 4/9F
2 (8) 3¼ Real World 5 9-0 Saeed bin Suroor Daniel Tudhope 5/1
3 (1) 1¾ Chindit 4 9-0 Richard Hannon Pat Dobbs 20/1
4 (2) ¾ Alcohol Free 4 8-11 Andrew Balding Rob Hornby 11/1
5 (7) ½ Sir Busker 6 9-0 William Knight Hollie Doyle 33/1
6 (6) 1 Sunray Major 5 9-0 John & Thady Gosden Frankie Dettori 40/1
7 (4) 4¾ Mother Earth 4 8-11 A P O'Brien Ryan Moore 10/1
8 (5) ¾ New Mandate 4 9-0 Ralph Beckett Richard Kingscote 40/1
9 (9) 1¼ Etonian 4 9-0 Richard Hannon Rossa Ryan 150/1