The Weekly Wrap: Ladies of a Certain Age

Lady Bowthorpe is the second group winner this season for her dam Maglietta Fina | Racing Post


Let's not forget, however great the lure of the sales ring or a wafting cheque book may be, thoroughbreds are bred to race. In the case of Prince Khalid Abdullah, Coolmore and Peter Brant, it could be said that we have three owner-breeders who are somewhat immune to commercially-based decisions when it comes to keeping a horse in training. Nevertheless, they are to be commended for racing on mares of the calibre of Enable (GB) (Nathaniel {Ire}), Magical (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) and Sistercharlie (Ire) (Myboycharlie {Ire}).

At 'only' five, Magical is the youngster of the trio. Even at six, the other two clearly still have many good years ahead of them at stud, granted a normal run. Their eventual offspring will likely race for their respective breeders, initially at least, so it's not a case of missing out on sales of potentially lucrative yearlings, but remaining in training does present a degree of risk, however sound and talented the individual in question. It would have been all too easy to opt for the safe route and retire any of these horses after their 4-year-old seasons but, thankfully for the racing public, we are still able to enjoy their exploits on the track, putting them in an elite bracket of older racemares alongside the likes of Goldikova (Ire), Ouija Board (GB), Treve (Fr), Winx (Aus) and Black Caviar (Aus).

One vagary of this year's disrupted and delayed season was that the G1 Tattersalls Gold Cup was run two months later than its usual late May slot and only a day after the G1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth QIPCO S., thus giving Magical the option of staying at home rather than meeting Enable for a fourth time. Last year she was runner-up to the Juddmonte titan in both the G1 Coral-Eclipse and G1 Darley Yorkshire Oaks.

Plenty has been committed to print regarding the three-runner King George and, yes, it was unsatisfactory but, as already stated last week, far more unsatisfactory was the fact that the eight remaining runners at the five-day stage hailed from just two stables. Perhaps more concerning, in a week in which Investec dropped its Derby and Oaks sponsorship six years ahead of schedule, was to see the social media comment from Sheikh Fahad, who sponsors the King George with his brothers under their QIPCO banner, that it was “such a shame” to see the race attract only three runners after the scratching of Anthony Van Dyck (Ire).

Let's hope that this is just a blip and that, in hopefully more regular seasons to come, the race holds its appeal for connections of the top 3-year-olds. It was a desperate shame not to see Love (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) take on Enable—perhaps we will at York. Now a record-breaking treble winner of the King George, Enable herself won it as a 3-year-old, as did her sire Nathaniel and grandsire Galileo.

Sistercharlie, representing one of France's pre-eminent breeding operations, Ecurie des Monceaux, was perhaps a little ring-rusty in her delayed return in Saturday's GII Ballston Spa S., in which she could manage only third. The winner, Canadian turf champion Starship Jubilee (Indy Wind) is another in the twilight years of a Flat career at the age of seven. That has clearly been no barrier to success in 2020, as this was her fourth consecutive victory of the year and she looks likely to be asked to defend her title in the GI EP Taylor S. The admirable mare has won 18 of her 36 starts and more than $1.6 million in prize-money. Not bad for a horse plucked from a Gulfstream Park claimer for $16,000 back in 2017.

Fine Season For Maglietta Fina
Enable remains the pin-up girl for her sire Nathaniel but he was also represented over the weekend by Lady Bowthorpe (GB), who recorded her first stakes success in the G3 Betfred Valiant Fillies' S. at Ascot. In fact, all bar two of Nathaniel's group winners are fillies, including his other two Group 1 winners Channel (Ire) and God Given (GB).

Lady Bowthorpe was contributing to a fine spell for her dam, Maglietta Fina (Ire) (Verglas {Ire}), a five-time winner over the minimum trip for her Rome-based owner-breeders Paolo and Emma Agostini of Scuderia Archi Romani. The Agostinis keep just two mares at Fittocks Stud and have had a long association with Luca and Sara Cumani, notably through their homebred G2 Challenge S. winner Le Vie Dei Colori (GB) (Efisio {GB}), who was trained by Luca.

For Maglietta Fina, Lady Bowthorpe was a second group winner of the season after her first foal Speak In Colours (GB) (Excelebration {Ire}) added the G2 Greenlands S. and G3 Ballycorus S. to his improving record. Some black type is also surely within reach of the mare's 3-year-old Pretty In Grey (GB) (Brazen Beau {Aus}), who won her fourth consecutive race at Newmarket on Saturday off a mark of 86. The Italian connection continues as she is trained by Speak In Colours's former trainer Marco Botti and still races in her breeders' colours.

“The Agostinis are very small breeders but they have done very well over the years, particularly with fast horses,” said Sara Cumani. “What we have to decide now is whether Maglietta Fina's Muhaarar (GB) colt goes to Book 1 or Book 2 of the October Sale.”

Maglietta Fina was herself a vendor buyback when offered at the SGA Select Yearling Sale in Milan in 2010, and both Speak In Colours and Pretty In Grey were retained at 25,000gns and 24,000gns when offered as foals. The William Jarvis-trained Lady Bowthorpe was bought by James Toller for her owner Emma Banks for 82,000gns, while last year's Mayson (GB) yearling filly was the mare's first six-figure sale when bought by John Foote for 100,000gns. Sadly, she has subsequently died while in quarantine in Australia.

Cumani added, “Lady Bowthorpe was a very good walker but she was the exception, and the reason Maglietta Fina's progeny have not sold so well so far is that they are not terribly good walkers, but walking is not everything, as we know.”

Maglietta Fina has no foal this year but is now in foal to Holy Roman Emperor (Ire). She is a half-sister to the multiple group winner Tullius (GB), who won 11 of his 42 races and was a member of the second crop of Le Vie Dei Colori, who stood at Rathbarry Stud for three seasons until his premature death at the age of just eight.

Le Vie Dei Colori was not the only stallion bred by the Agostinis, who were also responsible for Italian group winner Per Incanto (Street Cry {Ire}), who stands at Little Avondale Stud and is currently fourth in the New Zealand sires' table.

Meanwhile Lady Bowthorpe became the first group winner for Emma Banks, who also owns the useful Arigato (GB) (Poet's Voice {GB}), who has two entries at Goodwood this week, and previously raced fellow Jarvis trainee and dual listed winner Mrs Gallagher (GB) (Oasis Dream {GB}).

Santosha Memorable For Many
The form of the G2 Duchess Of Cambridge S., won by Dandalla (Ire) (Dandy Man {Ire}), has been boosted twice in the last week. Firstly, runner-up Fev Rover (Ire) (Gutaifan {Ire}) won the listed Star S. over seven furlongs at Sandown and, on Sunday at Ascot, third-placed Santosha (Ire) reappeared to win the G3 Princess Margaret S. The filly became not just the first group winner for her trainer David Loughnane and young jockey Tom Greatrex, but also for her freshman sire Coulsty (Ire), who stands at Rathasker Stud.

Coulsty has had just nine runners so far, four of which are now winners, and he is one of four sons of Kodiac (GB) in the first-season sires' list along with Prince Of Lir (Ire), Adaay (Ire) and Kodi Bear (Ire).

A daughter of Princess Zoffany (Ire), Santosha also became the first group winner as a broodmare sire for Zoffany (Ire) in the same week that Tiger Tanaka (Ire) (Clodovil {Ire}), who was third in the G2 Prix Robert Papin, provided his first black type in this regard. To date, there are just 20 horses of racing age out of Zoffany mares.

It was also a good week for Zoffany's father Dansili (GB) in the broodmare sire division, where he was represented by G2 York S. winner Aspetar (GB) (Al Kazeem {GB}), and the listed winners Dark Vision (Ire) (Dream Ahead) and Valia (Fr) (Sea The Stars {Ire}).

Ladies First
Two breakthrough racing moments were provided in the last week by Claire Kubler and Hollie Doyle.

Kubler joined her husband Daniel as official co-trainer, the pair becoming the first husband-and-wife team in Britain to hold a training partnership. The BHA rule was changed in this regard in May to allow more than one name to appear on a training licence. To date, Paul Cole has been joined by his son Oliver, and Simon Crisford by his son Ed.

Doyle broke new ground by becoming the first female jockey in Britain to be retained officially by an owner, in this case Imad Al Sagar, who has previously raced Group 1 winners Authorized (Ire), Decorated Knight (GB) and Araafa (Ire).

Doyle has ridden 38 winners since the Flat jockeys' championship started on June 1 and is currently lying in fifth place, ahead of former champions Jim Crowley, Ryan Moore and Silvestre de Sousa.

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