Legatissimo seals Moore's Guineas double
Ryan Moore became the first rider in 10 years to complete the Guineas double when guiding the David Wachman-trained Legatissimo to victory in yesterday's opening fillies' Classic at Newmarket.
A late spare ride for Moore after the defection of Aidan O'Brien's Found, the recent Gowran Park winner outstayed her rivals in what turned out to be 1,000 Guineas 1-2 for the raiders as Jim Bolger's Lucida gave her most to do.
Having steered Gleneagles to victory in the colts' version 24 hours earlier, Moore emulated the feat of Kieran Fallon in 2005 on Foostepsinthesand and Virgina Waters and he is now only 33/1 to win the three remaining English Classics this season.
Like Saturday's equine hero, Legatissimo carries the familiar orange and blue colours of Coolmore's Michael Tabor but, unlike Gleneagles, the filly is in the care of Wachman, and it was a first English Classic for John Magnier's son-in-law.
For a long way in yesterday's race a back-to-form Tiggy Wiggy led the field a merry gallop and only two fillies got past the Richard Hannon speedster; first the favourite Lucida at the furlong pole, then late on she was cut down by Legatissimo, which stayed on to win by three-parts of a length with last year's champion two-year-old filly over four lengths back in third.
Legatissimo, a 13/2 shot, certainly had an unconventional Guineas preparation and was having her third start in three weeks. Having disappointed on the heavy ground at Leopardstown in mid-April, last week she won the Victor McCalmont Stakes over nine and a half furlongs at Gowran on better ground.
"It's great," said Wachman. "She's a nice filly. She got stuck in the mud at Leopardstown but proved her well-being at Gowran. Stepping back in trip was never a worry.
"A mile and a quarter might be the magic number for her, but it's a mile and a half (the Oaks) that comes first in the calendar. There are a lot of fillies at Ballydoyle so she might have to let something else have a go, although with horses they usually sort themselves out."
Moore added: "I thought Found was exceptional, but we managed to find another. When I put this filly into gear she was always going to get there. Wayne (Lordan) and David told me exactly how she'd be - I just had to point her. I wouldn't be 100pc sure yet she'd stay a mile and a half."
Bolger reckoned Lucida ran well enough to win nine out of 10 editions of the race. "She just got outstayed," he said. "We'll look at the Irish Guineas and Coronation."
Dermot Weld is still looking at the Epsom Oaks for Zannda despite finishing runner-up to John Gosden's Jazzi Top, which continued her progression with a stylish win in the Tweenhills Stallions Pretty Polly Stakes.
The last two winners of this race have gone on to win the Oaks in Talent and Taghrooda, but the 5/2 winner is not certain to tread the path to Epsom.
It was quite a messy race, with fillies heading off in all directions going into the dip but Frankie Dettori made a beeline for the new cutaway. Zannda, the 15/8 favourite, was a persistent challenger with James Tate's Namhroodah also on the premises, but Gosden's filly pulled clear for a length and a half win.
"It looked like she was feeling the ground a bit," observed Weld. "But she was coming back at them in the closing stages and is crying out for a mile and a half. A bit of ease in the ground would suit her ideally so we'll see what happens and keep our options open, but she is still very much a filly we are looking at running in an Oaks.
"The ground is normally quite quick as Ascot so that wouldn't suit her."
Michael Stoute is considering the Curragh's Pretty Polly Stakes for his progressive four-year-old Bragging after Moore initiated a double of his own in the Dahlia Stakes. The Khalid Abdullah-owned filly was having her first outing since chasing home Kiyoshi at Doncaster in September.
Luca Cumani's Kleo looked like she would land the spoils at the furlong pole, but Moore got down to work on Bragging and the 9/2 shot responded to win by three-quarters of a length.
"That was a very good start and she got the trip well," said the trainer. "We'll have to stop and think now - she's in the Middleton (at York) but that might come to soon. The Pretty Polly (at the Curragh) might come into it, it's a race we like."
At Longchamp, veteran Cirrus Des Aigles held off Al Kazeem to win the Prix Ganay for the third time.
Christophe Soumillon went for home on Corine Barande-Barbe's charge at the top of the straight but Olivier Peslier, riding Al Kazeem for the first time, was stalking in behind.
On entering the final furlong it looked like Al Kazeem was going to prevail as he closed to within a length, but Cirrus Des Aigles found plenty for pressure and eventually ran out a cosy winner. (© Daily Telegraph, London)