Galileo's Free Wind Overcomes Traffic To Plunder Haydock Feature

Free Wind (centre) |

George Strawbridge's 4-year-old filly Free Wind (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}–Alive Alive Oh {GB}, by Duke of Marmalade {Ire}) prevailed in three out of four starts last term and closed her sophomore campaign with a seven-length rout in September's G3 Park Hill S. at Doncaster. She was sent postward as the 11-4 joint-favourite for Saturday's G2 bet365 Lancashire Oaks, her seasonal return, and overcame severe traffic problems in the closing stages of the 12-furlong test to register a career high in taking fashion. The eventual winner settled into a smooth rhythm behind the leading duo in third from flagfall, but was badly hampered and made heavy contact with the far-side rail for several strides when launching her bid soon after passing the quarter-mile marker. Finding a clear passage and returned on an even keel entering the final furlong, she displayed an impressive array of gears to hunt down Sea La Rosa (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) with 100 yards remaining en route to a 2 1/4-length triumph.

“She's done well to pick up again after that,” reflected rider Rab Havlin. “The gap was there and my filly was going well. We just got tight, but credit to the filly as she organised herself and picked up. We always thought she was a proper filly last year and she did it today. She doesn't show a great deal at home and never has, but on the track she's been really progressive and looks like a Group 1 filly. I'd say we'd probably aim her a bit higher than the [G2] Lillie Langtry, that's an obvious race to consider at Goodwood, but I'd imagine connections will want to go for a Group 1.”

There was a sting in the tail for Havlin, who picked up a five-day suspension for being the one deemed to have initiated his own interference. “Sometimes horses will lean off the rail and I thought I gave Jim [Crowley on Eshaada] half a furlong to see if he was going to go back on,” he explained. “The gap was there and my filly was going well, but we just got tight. Normally, if it opens straight away, you would just wait as they can roll on and off the rail. I felt he was off the rail for long enough and his filly looked as if she was leaning into the Haggas filly [Sea La Rose], so I thought I was going to take the opportunity as I was going well. When I got halfway there it got tight.”

Free Wind, full-sister to a yearling colt, is the second of four foals and one of two scorers for MSW G3 Dance Design S. third Alive Alive Oh (GB) (Duke of Marmalade {Ire}), herself half to G3 Fukushima Kinen and G3 Tanabata Sho victor Crescendo Love (Jpn) (Stay Gold {Jpn}). Alive Alive Oh is also kin to the dam of the dual stakes-placed Soldier's Minute (GB) (Raven's Pass). The April-foaled bay's second dam Higher Love (Ire) (Sadler's Wells), who was runner-up in the Listed Cheshire Oaks, is out of Listed Lingfield Oaks Trial runner-up Dollar Bird (Ire) (Kris {GB}), herself a half-sister to GSW sire Amfortas (Ire) (Caerleon) and to the dam of G1 1000 Guineas heroine Virginia Waters (Kingmambo) and G1SP sires Chevalier (Ire) (Danehill) and Alexander of Hales (Danehill).

Saturday, Haydock, Britain
BET365 LANCASHIRE OAKS-G2, £115,000, Haydock, 7-2, 3yo/up, f, 11f 175yT, 2:37.89, sf.
1–FREE WIND (IRE), 133, f, 4, by Galileo (Ire)
1st Dam: Alive Alive Oh (GB) (SW & GSP-Ire), by Duke of Marmalade (Ire)
2nd Dam: Higher Love (Ire), by Sadler's Wells
3rd Dam: Dollar Bird (Ire), by Kris (GB)
(325,000gns Ylg '19 TATOCT). O-George Strawbridge; B-Mrs Sue Ann Foley (IRE); T-John & Thady Gosden; J-Robert Havlin. £65,217. Lifetime Record: GSW-Fr, 7-5-1-0, $238,855. Werk Nick Rating: A+. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Sea La Rosa (Ire), 133, f, 4, Sea The Stars (Ire)–Soho Rose (Ire), by Hernando (Fr). (€200,000 Ylg '19 ARAUG). O-Sunderland Holding Inc; B-G&B Partnership (IRE); T-William Haggas. £24,725.
3–Eshaada (GB), 133, f, 4, Muhaarar (GB)–Muhawalah (Ire), by Nayef. O/B-Shadwell Estate Company Ltd (GB); T-Roger Varian. £12,374.
Margins: 2 1/4, NK, 2 1/4. Odds: 2.75, 4.00, 2.75.
Also Ran: Believe In Love (Ire), Stay Alert (GB), Nell Quickly (Ire), Kawida (GB). Scratched: Invite (Ire). Click for the free catalogue-style pedigree.


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