Into the Unknown for Pollyanna

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Pretty Pollyanna | Scoop Dyga

Confined to six furlongs so far, the Gredleys’ Pretty Pollyanna (GB) (Oasis Dream {GB}) stretches out at Newmarket on Friday as she bids to re-assert her influence on the juvenile scene in the G1 bet365 Fillies’ Mile. Suffering a potentially momentum-stopping defeat in the G1 Cheveley Park S. here 13 days ago, the homebred who is not bred to be a pure sprinter may find this extra distance the ideal scenario for expressing herself. There was enough in her seven-length success from a solid field in the July 13 G2 Duchess of Cambridge S. on the other track in this town and her battling dismissal of Signora Cabello (Ire) (Camacho {GB}) in the Aug. 19 G1 Prix Morny at Deauville to suggest she will see out this trip. It is only a question of whether her campaigning over six furlongs will have undermined her staying power, but trainer Michael Bell is confident she will adapt to the new challenge.

“It’s 440 yards further than she’s been before, but I’m hopeful regarding the trip and we’re looking forward to it,” he said. “We’re very happy with her wellbeing. She’s had a relatively easy time since the Cheveley Park, but Danny [Tudhope] came and sat on her on Saturday during a couple of canters up Warren Hill and he was very happy.”

Winner of five editions, with three coming in the last four years, Aidan O’Brien saddles a strong duo in the Sept. 16 G1 Moyglare Stud S. third and fourth Hermosa (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) and Zagitova (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), with Donnacha on the former who has since captured the Sept. 30 G3 Weld Park S. at Naas.

“Obviously she only ran in Naas the other day, but we’ve been happy with her since,” the Ballydoyle handler said of the latter. “She’s progressing with every run. Zagitova has been in good form since the Moyglare and we were very happy with her run there. She’s a big filly and hopefully she is progressing with every run too.”

Trainer Ralph Beckett puts forward Waverley Racing’s unbeaten Antonia de Vega (Ire) (Lope de Vega {Ire}), who looked as if she was crying out for a mile when getting up late to win Goodwood’s G3 Prestige S. over a furlong shorter Aug. 25. “She’s had no problems since Goodwood. It was always the plan to bring her straight for this race,” he said. “I think the mile will suit her.”

Newmarket’s powerhouse stables John Gosden and Sir Michael Stoute have representatives due respect, with Duke of Devonshire and Duke of Roxburghe’s dual winner Shambolic (Ire) (Shamardal) coming from Clarehaven and Shadwell’s Layaleena (Ire) (Sea the Stars {Ire}) flying the flag for Freemason Lodge. Despite the latter’s disappointing and surprising defeat when fifth in a novice contest on Lingfield’s Polytrack Sept. 15, it is notable that Stoute opts to take on some ivy-leaguers here.

Ballydoyle’s presence in the G3 Godolphin Lifetime Care Oh So Sharp S. is felt via the grey Frosty (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), a full-sister to Winter (Ire) who was so impressive in last year’s G1 1000 Guineas over this terrain. Her debut success over this trip at Dundalk Sept. 28 had plenty of promise, but she may not have been winning the strongest of maidens. “She’s only had the one run and we would have preferred that she had more experience, but we think the experience will do her good and she should come forward again from the run,” Aidan O’Brien commented.

William Haggas puts Qatar Racing’s ‘TDN Rising Star’ Hidden Message (Scat Daddy) sports a first-time hood despite the manner of her debut success over six furlongs at Yarmouth Sept. 20, while Phoenix Thoroughbred Limited’s $1-million KEESEP graduate Mistress of Love (Scat Daddy) has to prove herself back on grass after a smooth success over this trip on Newcastles Tapeta Sept. 3.

“She’s a lovely filly who does have a predominantly dirt pedigree,” trainer Karl Burke said. “She ran terribly on her debut on turf, but we forgave her as we knew she was better than that. We’ll find out if she’s as good on the turf as she is on the all-weather.”

Julian Richmond-Watson’s homebred Glance (GB) (Dansili {GB}) beat the re-opposing Sept. 29 course-and-distance winner Sunday Star (GB) (Kodiac {GB}) in a novice contest at Goodwood Sept. 4 and is a relative of the connections’ G1 Epsom Oaks heroine Look Here (GB) (Hernando {Fr}). “We’ve been happy with her since Goodwood and that form has worked out well,” Glance’s trainer Ralph Beckett commented. “She’s in good form and I think this is the right place for her.”

The card opens with the G3 Newmarket Academy Godolphin Beacon Project Cornwallis S., where True Mason (GB) (Mayson {GB}) reverts to five furlongs having chased home Kessaar (Ire) (Kodiac {GB}) in the G2 Mill Reef S. over a furlong further Sept. 22. Trainer Karl Burke said of Khalifa Dasmal’s colt, who was previously third behind Pretty Pollyanna in the Morny, “I’d just like to see a drop of rain for him, but he’s a worthy favourite. This looked the logical race after Newbury. He does handle quick ground, but being a Mayson he’s happier with a bit of cut.”

Aidan O’Brien brings ‘TDN Rising Star’ Sergei Prokofiev (Scat Daddy) back to five after the May 20 Listed Rochestown S. scorer and June 19 G2 Coventry S. third was seventh in the G1 Middle Park S. here 13 days ago. Later in the afternoon, the weather’s perennial hostage to fortune Limato (Ire) (Tagula {Ire}) bids for back-to-back renewals of the seven-furlong G2 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards Challenge S. Taken out of Saturday’s G3 Bengough S. after the heavens opened, Paul Jacobs’ star sprinter will have no excuses if he comes up short over what has probably always been his ideal trip.

“Henry [Candy] has been at the sales and has looked at the track, it’s fine at the moment,” his owner said. “Although it’s a smaller field than when he won last year, I think it’s a higher calibre of opponent. All we can do is rock up and see. If he doesn’t get to run, the only other option is Champions Day, but it would need to recover from what they had last Saturday and in this country in late October, anything can happen with the weather.”

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