Aidan O’Brien completed another Guineas double as Hermosa made just about every yard of the running to win the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket.
It was the fourth time the maestro from Ballydoyle had won both opening Classics of the season, and the second time in three years Wayne Lordan had been the beneficiary after Winter’s success in 2017.
By Galileo, there was little doubt Hermosa (14-1) would be found wanting for stamina – and Lordan was happy to make it a real test.
Running into the dip, she looked sure to be swamped because Lady Kaya was still on the bridle and Angel’s Hideaway moved up travelling strongly too.
Hermosa just kept on finding for pressure, though – and on meeting the rising ground, she began to pull away again.
Lady Kaya ran a blinder to be beaten just a length in second, while the 7-2 favourite Qabala stayed on to claim third.
The winner now ranges in price from 5-1 to 8-1 for the Investec Oaks.
“We are delighted. She did very well over the winter, and she ran an unbelievable race last year in the Fillies’ Mile,” said O’Brien.
“She is very uncomplicated. She is tough and, like her sister (Hydrangea), stays well. Wayne gave her a great ride, and it is credit to everyone at home.
“Joseph (O’Brien) said she was the danger, and that’s why Donnacha (O’Brien) was following her. Everyone was very happy with her.
“Physically she has changed a lot over the winter and really grew into a three- year-old. She is a tough filly. The plan was to go along (in front) with her, and she was happy to go, because we knew she would get the trip well.
“The boss (John Magnier) always says it is about the blood, and the pedigree is the road map.
“I would say that is what she is going to love (the Oaks). The Irish Guineas is there to look at, but she won’t mind stepping up in trip.
“What can you say about Galileo – his influence is going to be forever and ever.”
Sheila Lavery was proud of Lady Kaya in second.
“At the back of mind I was just a bit worried (about the trip) – but she very nearly got there,” said the County Meath trainer.
“I’m not discounting a mile, but I will go back and look at it and take advice.
“Racing at this level, what do I know? But I’ve got lots of people who will help, so I’m very thankful.
“Robbie Colgan is stable jockey, and I’ve wanted him to go on the Flat – you would never think this time last year he was jumping fences. He is cool and not intimidated by anybody, and he rides his own race.
“I’m just ecstatic. I suppose in a way it hasn’t sunk in – but now I will have a drink and relax once I go see how she has walked off. I know Richard Hannon said yesterday ‘who remembers second’ – but I will remember this second.”
Roger Varian had more mixed feelings after his big-race favourite Qabala finished third.
“I thought she ran great – you are a bit disappointed not to win, always,” said the Newmarket trainer, who lamented a slightly troubled passage through the race.
“It was tight two (furlongs) from home.
“I’m not going to say she would have won, because it was too far out and it is a too grey an area to say that. But he (jockey David Egan) thought it cost him about a length, because he couldn’t hold his pitch and he has had to come out around Fairyland – just when you want to really run in a straight line.
“It is disappointing not to win – but I can’t fault anyone or the filly, because she has run a great race.”