Invincible Spirit's Nazeef Prevails In Falmouth Thriller

Nazeef (left) takes the Falmouth | Racing Post


Confirming her upward trajectory, Shadwell's Nazeef (GB) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}) had her determined head down where it counted to come out on top of a three-way go in Friday's G1 Tattersalls Falmouth S. at Newmarket. Looking all heart when successful in the G2 Duke of Cambridge S. over this mile trip at Royal Ascot June 16, the 9-2 shot was ideally placed by Jim Crowley in the slipstream of the 5-6 favourite Terebellum (Ire) (Sea the Stars {Ire}) throughout the early stages. Working her way past that stablemate in the last 150 yards, the homebred had to dig in as Billesdon Brook (GB) (Champs Elysees {GB}) emerged strong on the other side of the long-time leader but proved up to her latest assignment to master her by a neck, with the same margin back to Terebellum.

“She's come a long way now and is a real trier and gorgeous-looking as well,” Crowley said. “To cap it like that is testament to her will-to-win. Frankie's horse was the only one with ten-furlong form and it was obvious he was going to go forward so I only had to get in behind and the rest was pretty easy. Although I didn't want to get into a war with Frankie, on the other hand she was a bit flat-footed going down into the 'dip' and he took a length out of me there. In fairness to her, when we got to within half a length she was always going to get there. She had a hard time at Ascot, as I had to be quite forceful that day so I didn't want to give her too hard a race here but she seems to be thriving on her racing. She could have gone the other way from Ascot, but has taken a big step forwards again. She seems to be always hitting the line very hard and I wouldn't rule out going further or taking on the boys. She's a tough filly and a pleasure to ride wherever she goes.”

Lightly-raced at three, the fully-mature Nazeef has now had only one less outing in the last six weeks than she had in her previous campaign. Off the mark over seven furlongs on this track last June, she went on to take a Chelmsford mile novice contest in early September before scoring by six lengths in a handicap on fast ground on the Rowley Mile here later that month. Getting seven pounds from Billesdon Brook in the June 3 Listed Snowdrop Fillies' S. on Kempton's Polytrack on her 4-year-old bow, she beat that G1 1000 Guineas and G1 Sun Chariot S. heroine by 3/4 of a length before upstaging Agincourt (Ire) (Declaration of War) in a tight finale to the Duke of Cambridge.

Putting clear water between her and Agincourt here while showing that she could best Billesdon Brook on level terms, Nazeef arguably has further significant progress within her scope to continue to reward the decision by her owner-breeder to break habit and keep her in training. Trainer John Gosden admitted to being surprised that she was able to beat the June 16 G1 Queen Anne S. runner-up afterwards. “I just don't think Terebellum ran her race, but she'll be fine. She seemed to have it won, but she didn't finish the race off in the way you would have expected her to do,” he said. “The winner is a lovely, brave filly, but I thought Terebellum had it under control. They don't work together, but from what we know of them, I thought the betting was correct.”

Gosden has a trip to Deauville in mind for the winner now. “The [Aug. 2 G1] Prix Rothschild is the obvious place to go with Nazeef. She is quite lazy and doesn't show you much at home, but she dug deep today and has a great attitude,” he added. “Sheikh Hamdan doesn't normally keep four-year-old fillies in training. He allowed me to do it with this filly and she has now won a group one here and a group two at Royal Ascot, which is great.”

Richard Hannon said of Billesdon Brook, “She has run a super race and I'm delighted–she is our most loyal soldier. We will keep going with her. There is the Prix Rothschild and lots of other races. She has run a super race and is as hard as nails and one of the most robust mares ever. She is a star and her owners are immensely proud, as am I.”

Nazeef is out of the operation's Handassa (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}), who captured the Listed Garnet S. on similar ground to that which her daughter encountered here. She is a half to the GII San Gabriel S. winner and GI Frank E. Kilroe Mile third Desert Stone (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}) and the G3 Darley S. scorer Euginio (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}), who was as versatile ground-wise as Nazeef. The unraced second dam Starstone (GB) (Diktat {GB}) is a half-sister to the Bahamian Bounty (GB) pair of group 1-winning sprinters Pastoral Pursuits (GB) and Goodricke (GB), with the former being the 2005 July Cup hero as rain also hit this meeting. Handassa's 2-year-old is the colt Mostahdaf (Ire) (Frankel {GB}).

Friday, Newmarket, Britain
TATTERSALLS FALMOUTH S.-G1, £110,000, Newmarket, 7-10, 3yo/up, f/m, 8fT, 1:40.14, sf.
1–NAZEEF (GB), 133, f, 4, by Invincible Spirit (Ire)
1st Dam: Handassa (GB) (SW-Ire), by Dubawi (Ire)
2nd Dam: Starstone (GB), by Diktat (GB)
3rd Dam: Star (GB), by Most Welcome (GB)
1ST GROUP 1 WIN. O-Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum; B-Shadwell Estate Company Ltd (GB); T-John Gosden; J-Jim Crowley. £62,381. Lifetime Record: 7-6-0-1, $202,595. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Billesdon Brook (GB), 133, m, 5, Champs Elysees (GB)–Coplow (GB), by Manduro (Ger). O-Mrs R J McCreery; B-Stowell Hill Partners (GB); T-Richard Hannon. £23,650.
3–Terebellum (Ire), 133, f, 4, Sea the Stars (Ire)–Marvada (Ire), by Elusive City. (€400,000 Ylg '17 ARAUG). O-Godolphin; B-Alan O'Flynn (IRE); T-John Gosden. £11,836.
Margins: NK, NK, HF. Odds: 4.50, 14.00, 0.83.
Also Ran: One Master (GB), Agincourt (Ire), Under the Stars (Ire). Scratched: Magic Wand (Ire). Click for the Racing Post result or the free catalogue-style pedigree.

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