GER Lyons yesterday made the decision to supplement his progressive filly, Lightening Pearl, for Saturday's Group One Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket at a cost of £15,000. And the trainer is hoping it will be money well spent.
The £163,500 contest is one of two Group Ones on Cambridgeshire Day at Britain's HQ and the Meath-based trainer is hopeful his star juvenile can come on from her run behind Aidan O'Brien's Maybe.
A possible 15 will go to post for the six-furlong contest, including the unbeaten Royal Ascot winner Best Terms, who Paddy Power have made the 2/1 favourite for Richard Hannon and Richard Hughes. Regarding the 4/1 second favourite, Lyons said yesterday: “Lightening Pearl is grand at the moment, and we are going to have a go at a Group One with her.
“For me, the best juvenile we have seen this season is Maybe and we were unlucky not to be second behind her in the Debutante Stakes.”
Lyons, who has had a good season, is targeting 50 winners for the campaign but also a first Group One win on the flat.
“Our filly stepped up with a good performance in the Round Tower Stakes and I didn't want to take on Maybe again. She gets seven furlongs and a mile, but she has shown enough speed for six furlongs so the Cheveley Park seemed the obvious race for her.”
Concluding, the Kildare native added; “I wouldn't want the going too quick but she goes on most ground – she's only a small light filly. Good ground would be lively, but she will be fine as long as it is not heavy or firm.”
There is also due to be a strong Irish representation in the Group One Sun Chariot Stakes, for which 14 have stood their ground, and among them is another supplemented entry from Ireland.
Connections of the John Oxx-trained Alanza parted company with £16,000 to get the three-year-old into the one-mile contest following her impressive win in Doncaster earlier this month, which brought up a hat-trick for the daughter of Dubai Destination.
“The weather looks like it will be dry enough for Alanza but she goes well enough on good to firm,” Oxx said yesterday.
“She came out of her Doncaster run very well – she came home in good form – and it was probably a case of going for this race or doing nothing with her for the rest of the year. It is a bit of a chance supplementing her, but she looks so well in herself that we are letting her run.”
Oxx admitted: “She doesn't have a Group One rating at the moment and she has a good bit to go, but we felt that she would make a nice four-year-old and she has a lot of things going for her.
“She is very tough, consistent and reliable and running her at Newmarket will point us in one direction or another with regards whether she can make the grade next season.”
One who does have a Group One already to her name is Matron Stakes winner Emulous who is also engaged in the Sun Chariot along with the O'Brien pair of Together and Wild Wind.