ANDRE Fabre is quite rightly recognised as one of the greatest trainers of all time and it is always worth sitting up and taking notice when he sends his horses over to these shores. He runs the four-year-old filly GOLDEN LILAC in this afternoon's Group One Falmouth Stakes (3.00pm) and she is strongly fancied to land the latest round of the QIPCO British Champions Series.
The daughter of Galileo has won six of her seven career starts, including three Group One successes. Her one defeat was a thoroughly respectable third to Galikova at Deauville last summer, and that performance was even more meritorious given she was suffering from a virus at the time. She then reappeared in the Prix D’Ispahan at Longchamp in May, beating two top class colts in Cirrus Des Aigles and Planteur.
Fabre has said this filly could end up running in the Arc in October, but she has been quite keen in her races and the drop back to a mile should help her settle. The ground, although not ideal, shouldn't pose many problems and I just feel she is a class above this afternoon's rivals.
Maybe has been disappointing in both her starts this season and I don’t think the Windsor Forest form of Joviality and Chachamaidee is anything to write home about. The biggest danger could come from fellow French filly, Giofra, but I doubt she quite has the gears of Golden Lilac.
John Gosden had yet another day to remember on Saturday when landing the Coral-Eclipse with Nathaniel, which added to the earlier victories of Great Heavens and Trade Commissioner. I’m not sure he’ll be winning any of this week's Group One prizes, but he is set to unleash an interesting colt this afternoon in the maiden at 3.45pm.
GHURAIR is making his debut and the Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned son of Elusive Quality is very well regarded back at Clarehaven. The stable have already unleashed a number of talented juveniles this season and the mount of Paul Hanagan is expected to go close on his first start.
It’s over to York for the final selection where I think SENTARIL can beat Margot Did in the Summer Stakes (2.35pm). William Haggas’ three-year-old filly was only beaten a length in the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot and drops down to six furlongs for the first time in her short career. Her trainer believes that could be the making of her and with Margot Did running disappointingly this season, she is expected to start her sprinting career in style.
SENTARIL 2.35pm York (today)
GOLDEN LILAC 3.00pm Newmarket (today)
GHURAIR 3.45pm Newmarket (today)