Duntle Takes Duke of Cambridge Stakes
1 Duntle 100/30
Duntle, already a winner at the Royal meeting having landed last year's Sandringham Handicap, landed the Duke of Cambridge Stakes in a thrilling finish.
The four-year-old daughter of Danehill Dancer is trained by David Wachman and was ridden by Wayne Lordan in the colours of Flaxman Stables Ireland Ltd, a Niarchos family interest. Last year she won the Sandringham Handicap at the Royal meeting, and later finished first in the Gr.1 Matron Stakes, but was disqualified and placed second.
After Duntle had beaten Ladys First and Dank by half a length and a head, Wachman said: “She did it well and Wayne gave her a very good ride. The filly doesn’t want to hit the front too soon and they didn’t go a great gallop which didn’t help. He was going very easily while trying to hang onto her, and while he got to the front soon enough he still had plenty up his sleeve.
“She’s a tough filly who won’t win by far. She’s a Group One winner, although they took it off her in the stewards’ room, and she’ll be heading back that way again. There is a good programme for fillies and mares and plenty of options, but the race at Deauville – the Prix Jacques Le Marois – which Maria Niarchos sponsors will be on the agenda.
“I train three for Maria, but a few more as good as this one would be all right.”
Lordan said: “The placed horses wouldn’t go away, but this filly doesn’t do much when she hits the front. Because we went so slowly I hit the front a little earlier than planned and she idled a bit, but when the fillies came around her she picked up.
“It was tight, but I always knew I was going to the line safe enough. Hopefully this year she will have a change of luck and win that Group One.”
Duke Of Cambridge Stakes (Fillies' Group 2)
AMERICA CALLS FOR LADYS FIRST
After a battling second place for Ladys First in the Group Two Duke Of Cambridge Stakes trainer Richard Fahey commented: “She is really tough and genuine. I might take her to America next – the Beverly D (Grade One at ArlingtonPark). I think a mile and one around two turns is where she wants to be.”
Ladys First has rarely been out of the places in her career but has only managed to fill the winner’s spot on two occasions, the last time being in a Listed mile event at HaydockPark in August, 2012. “The owner says I have to win before I can go – though I think he will say yes after that.” Fahey added.
Paul Hanagan, who rode the Dutch Art filly, added: “She’s one of the gamest fillies – she fought back all the way, she’s run a blinder. It would have been great for her to get her head in front – she deserves it.”
Third place was filled by Dank, trained by Sir Michael Stoute in Newmarket, who said: “She never lets us down, she’s just so consistent. She is a nine-furlong Group Two at the Curragh as well as the Falmouth Stakes but we will need a little time to go home and see what we do next.”
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