Dark Lady can look forward to outing in Group One company on her next start after gaining a deserved first Pattern-race success in the Shadwell Dick Poole Fillies’ Stakes at Salisbury.
Having finished in the frame on her previous two Group Three outings, the Richard Hannon-trained daughter of Dark Angel finally got her head in front at the same level when appearing to appreciate a drop back down to six furlongs.
Travelling well throughout for Pat Dobbs, the 13-2 shot burst through a gap approaching the final furlong, before wearing down Irish raider Millisle in the closing strides and scoring by a short head.
Summer Romance was sent off the 6-4 favourite, but was another four and a half lengths back in third.
Hannon said: “She is a bit similar to Threat, in that she has been knocking on the door.
“She takes her racing so well. She is very thick set and is a bit of a favourite in the yard, as she looks a bit like a bull. She gets to the races and you think she can’t be fit, but she is.
“She is immensely talented. She always travels well and at Goodwood (beaten a neck in second last month) it looked like those horses were in her way and she couldn’t get past the horse in front.
“I think that might be her trip and she will now go to the Cheveley Park.
“She deserves her chance.”
Next year’s Qipco 2000 Guineas was the first thing on the mind of trainer Roger Teal following the triumphant debut of Kenzai Warrior in the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Novice Stakes.
Teal sent Tip Two Win to finish second in the mile Classic last year and the Hungerford handler hopes his latest star can reach similar heights after making all to score by a neck.
Teal said: “My son Harry is not very complimentary about mine, but he rode him about six weeks ago and said he could be your next Guineas horse. I hope he is right.
“We nearly pulled it off before with Tip Two Win. We will see how he comes out of this, as it is only his first step today.
“We’ve looked after him and done the right thing. He has not stopped growing all year. We came here hoping for a big run, but first time out you can never be too confident. He did it the hard way.”
Equally thrilled as the 16-1 shot passed the post was joint-owner Rae Borras, who was quick to praise the handling of his pride and joy by Teal, along with thanking some help from above.
Borras, who owns Kenzai Warrior with his wife, Carol, said: “We have had excellent guidance from Roger. If anybody asks me about getting into racing I say go to Roger. He is the best trainer on the planet.
“My wife is a canon at St Albans Cathedral and she has been praying hard all week for this!”
Belated Breath continued to surprise Hughie Morrison in gaining the most valuable success of her career when getting the better of Goodnight Girl by half a length in the European Bloodstock News EBF “Lochsong” Fillies’ Handicap.
Morrison said of the 2-1 winner: “Who would have thought two years ago when I sent her home being backward and immature she would be doing what she is doing now.
“We won a race at Wolverhampton during Cheltenham week and we thought that would be it, and here she is winning off 90. There is a six-furlong handicap at Newmarket she could go to and there is also a Listed race there at the end of the year.
“The lad who looks after has had to go to hospital for some tests so this victory is fitting. He is a very good lad and loves her dearly.”
Snow Shower showed her 16-1 price tag to be all wrong when hitting the target at the first attempt in the Bob McCreery Memorial EBF Quidhampton Maiden Fillies’ Stakes.
Rider James Doyle said of the Sir Michael Stoute-trained winner: “I was told to teach her plenty, but that didn’t really happen and we were stuck out wide.
“They went pretty good fractions and I was confident I was in the right place. The race fell apart and she came through and picked up nicely.”