Love Prevails In the 1000 Guineas

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Love | Getty Images

It was another G1 Qipco 1,000 Guineas, another win for Ballydoyle on Sunday as Love (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) categorically signalled her rise to class principal with a command performance on Newmarket’s Rowley Mile. Always travelling strongly out wide for Ryan Moore, the G1 Moyglare Stud S. heroine who had been third in the G1 Fillies’ Mile over this course and distance in October was sent to the front heading down into the “dip”. Powering clear with the camber reversed uphill to the finish, the 4-1 joint-second favourite was emphatic there having opened up a 4 1/4-length margin over Cloak of Spirits (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}), who in turn held the free-running 11-4 market-leader Quadrilateral (GB) (Frankel {GB}) by a head.

Celebrating a sixth success in this Classic and a fourth in the last five back in his study in Co. Tipperary, Aidan O’Brien was already planning ahead to the winner’s next step in four weeks’ time. “She’s a special filly and we always thought she would get much further than a mile,” he said as bookmakers moved to ward off liabilities for the July 4 G1 Epsom Oaks. “She showed she got a mile last year and we always thought we’d start here and then maybe go on to the Oaks. Ryan gave her a beautiful ride, very uncomplicated, he got her in a lovely rhythm and I couldn’t have been happier really. He had her well-balanced into the dip, she’s very genuine and she had her head out and ran to the line.”

Going through the staggered stages of juvenile education that O’Brien provides so well with an ever-pleasing aptitude, Love was able to build and build upon quiet beginnings and reach the top of the class while still relishing her duties. From a creeping debut fourth at Leopardstown in early June, the chestnut showed some aggression when second to TDN Rising Star Windracer (Ire) (Showcasing {GB}) at The Curragh three weeks later and was back in Dublin with scholarly enthusiasm for two starts the next month. Breaking her maiden at the expense of the useful Soul Search (Ire) (Zoffany {Ire}), she was 8-1 and dismissed by Ryan Moore when tackling the G3 Silver Flash S. a fortnight later but thrived for the taskmaster Seamie Heffernan to issue a 3 1/4-length drubbing to her peers.

Fifth in the G2 Debutante S. when the ground was easy returning to The Curragh in August, she dealt with that setback with a learned professionalism by making no mistake on a livelier surface in the G1 Moyglare Stud S. also in Kildare in September. Giving her all again on her first overseas trip in the Fillies’ Mile, she was 1 3/4 lengths off Quadrilateral there with no obvious excuse but the feeling was that the last word had not been spoken in that particular argument.

Whereas Quadrilateral had been hard to rouse in that encounter, the Juddmonte homebred was hard on the steel from the break here and Jason Watson was at pains to restrain her in the slipstream of the leader Cloak of Spirits sandwiched between Rose of Kildare (Ire) (Make Believe {GB}) and Final Song (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}). After three furlongs, the unbeaten favourite was still pulling for her head while Ryan Moore was enjoying a hassle-free time on Love enjoying a perfect rhythm widest of all towards the centre. Passing two out, Godolphin’s 100-1 outsider Final Song might have been narrowly in front but Love was coming hard as the closers were struggling in behind.

Using the downhill slope to generate momentum from the strong-staying Love, Moore was soon beyond recall and it was left to Cloak of Spirits to find a second wind and deny Quadrilateral, whose finishing effort was compromised by her early antics. “She’s a very uncomplicated filly and we’ve always thought a lot of her,” the winning rider commented. “She’s a typical Galileo filly and she was in control of the race from a long way out. I’d say it’s a possibility that she’d stay at Epsom and at the moment she looks the best three-year-old filly around.”

Richard Hannon was at the same time both deflated and buoyed as he pondered the much-improved but not entirely unexpected improvement shown by Cloak of Spirits in the runner’s-up spot. “She did the donkey work and stuck at it. I’ve been second in a few Classics and it is horrible, but I’m delighted with the run,” he said. ” She is a very elegant, pretty classy filly. I might not have given her a prep run as she didn’t look great a month ago, plus she won first time out last year so she doesn’t necessarily need it, but she will improve and there are definitely group races in her. Maybe the [June 20 G1] Coronation Stakes [at Royal Ascot] could be next, but I will speak to Sheikh Obaid and see what he says. I think being out in front suits her and I think Andrea [Atzeni] rode her perfectly.”

Roger Charlton was not too downcast as he reflected on the run of Quadrilateral, which was in contrast to her last visit here. “She stayed on well, but just got a little tired in the closing stages. She could have probably done with a little more cover, but these races are being run from the front and nothing is coming from behind so you have to be handy,” he explained. “I was happy enough with that. The track probably doesn’t play to her strengths. Jason [Watson] seemed happy enough with the run. I don’t know what we will do going forward. I will talk to Prince Khalid first. I’d imagine she would stay further, but we won’t be rushing her.”

Remarkably, Love’s victory means that both European 1,000 Guineas to have been staged this year have been won by daughters of very moderate racemares trained by Stuart Williams. Whereas the G1 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches heroine Dream and Do (Ire) (Siyouni {Fr}) was out of Venetias Dream (Ire) (Librettist), this new doyenne of Ballydoyle is the progeny of Pikaboo (GB) (Pivotal {GB}) who was just as unremarkable a runner for the Newmarket handler. Sold on five separate occasions and twice when her racing career was over, she ended up with the Venners for 50,000gns at the 2012 Tattersalls December Mares Sale just before her proverbial boat came in.

Months after her final visit to a public auction, Pikaboo’s George Margarson-trained daughter Lucky Kristale (GB) (Lucky Story) was capturing the G2 Lowther S. and G2 Cherry Hinton S. and Coolmore moved to acquire her. Giving the operation instant reward via the group 3-winning Galileo fillies Flattering (Ire) and Peach Tree (Ire), Pikaboo has excelled herself with this latest gem. Despite her modest racing record, there was always a chance that she could do something in her second career being a half-sister to the seven-furlong specialist and dual G2 Park S.-winning sire Arabian Gleam (GB) by Pivotal’s son Kyllachy (GB).

Among Pikaboo’s other half-siblings are the listed-winning sprinter Kimberella (GB) who is also by Kyllachy, and Light Quest (Quest For Fame {GB}) who is in turn the dam of the G3 Prix Fille de l’Air scorer and stakes producer Skia (Fr) (Motivator {GB}) and the Singapore Gold Cup winner Tropaios (GB) (Excellent Art {GB}). This is also the family of the G1 English and Irish 2000 Guineas-winning sire Don’t Forget Me (Ire) (Ahonoora {GB}).

Sunday, Newmarket, Britain
QIPCO 1000 GUINEAS S.-G1, £250,000, Newmarket, 6-7, 3yo, f, 8fT, 1:35.80, gd.
1–LOVE (IRE), 126, f, 3, by Galileo (Ire)
1st Dam: Pikaboo (GB), by Pivotal (GB)
2nd Dam: Gleam of Light (Ire), by Danehill
3rd Dam: Gold Runner, by Runnett (GB)
O-Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith & Susan Magnier; B-Coolmore (IRE); T-Aidan O’Brien; J-Ryan Moore. £141,775. Lifetime Record: G1SW-Ire, 8-4-1-1, $566,289. *Full to Flattering (Ire), GSW-Ire, SP-Eng; and Peach Tree (Ire), GSW-Ire, $142,207; and 1/2 to Lucky Kristale (GB) (Lucky Story), MGSW-Eng, $288,793. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Cloak of Spirits (Ire), 126, f, 3, Invincible Spirit (Ire)–Pivotique (GB), by Pivotal (GB). O/B-Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum (IRE); T-Richard Hannon. £53,750.
3–Quadrilateral (GB), 126, f, 3, Frankel (GB)–Nimble Thimble, by Mizzen Mast. O-Khalid Abdullah; B-Juddmonte Farms Ltd (GB); T-Roger Charlton. £26,900.
Margins: 4 1/4, HD, 1. Odds: 4.00, 12.00, 2.75.
Also Ran: Final Song (Ire), Romsey (GB), Under the Stars (Ire), Millisle (Ire), Summer Romance (Ire), Rose of Kildare (Ire), Shimmering (Ire), Graceful Magic (GB), Boomer (GB), Yes Always (Ire), Les Hogues (Ire), Raffle Prize (Ire). Click for the Racing Post result or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.

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