Watson relishing 1000 Guineas chance with Quadrilateral

‘She knows the track now and that is very important to her’.

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Jason Watson expects Quadrilateral to make full use of her previous track experience as she bids for Classic gold in the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.

The Roger Charlton-trained filly was unbeaten in three runs last year, culminating in victory over the same course and distance as the Guineas in the Fillies’ Mile.

The daughter of Frankel had the reopposing Love back in third that day, while Boomer was fifth, and her big-race jockey believes Quadrilateral has the class to prevail on the biggest stage.

Watson said: “She has wintered well. We are very happy with how she has progressed this winter. That task she was set at the end of last season was tough and she came out of it on top and she won it very professionally.

“She knows the track now and that is very important to her. The ground was quite tacky the last day, which didn’t help her out.

“It was only her third run and she was still lacking a little bit of experience, so to win a Group One on her third day at school was a big deal. The way she put the race to bed was impressive.

“I don’t sit on her much her home, but her regular work rider is very happy with how she has progressed. I noticed when I’ve sat on her that she has grown, not a big amount, but she has strengthened up massively and she looks more like a colt than a filly.

“I think how she has strengthened and the amount of muscle she has put on will give her a chance to go along with them this time.

“She is just a high-class animal. Whatever you throw her at she is prepared for and she has just naturally got it.”

Jessica Harrington has a strong hand in the three-year-old fillies’ division and her contender here is Millisle, a surprise 16-1 winner of the Cheveley Park Stakes on her final outing last year.

Millisle was ridden by Shane Foley, but with coronavirus travel restrictions meaning he would have to quarantine for 14 days after making a trip to Britain, Oisin Murphy now takes the ride.

Harrington told Paddy Power Media’s new podcast, From The Horse’s Mouth: “She’s done all her work and I’m very happy with her preparation.

“She seems to be in good form and the great thing about her is she’s been to England already twice last year as a two-year-old and she more or less took it in her stride each time she went.

“We were lucky enough to get Oisin – he’s never sat on her but look, she’s very straightforward and hopefully he’ll get on great with her.”

Millisle has won over five and six furlongs, but Harrington is not concerned by stepping up in trip.

She added: “(I’m) not really because if you look at when she won the Cheveley Park, she wasn’t going to win anything when they got into the dip and when she hit the rising ground, she stayed on very well and ran right through the line to the extent that Shane had difficulty pulling her up.

“I trained her half-sister and she won over I think a mile and a half and she was placed in a Listed race over a mile and six. So I think there’s plenty of stamina in the pedigree. I hope (Starspangledbanner has put enough speed into her) so and she’s also a filly that will relax.”

Aidan O’Brien relies on Love, winner of the Moyglare Stud Stakes last year, who has to find just short of two lengths with Quadrilateral on their Fillies’ Mile performances.

The Ballydoyle handler, who has won three of the last four renewals, said: “We’ve always liked Love, she’s a very straightforward filly and we’ve always thought she’d stay further than a mile.

“She ran in Newmarket with a view that she might come back for the Guineas and we were very happy with the run.”

Raffle Prize was beaten a length and a quarter by Millisle in the Cheveley Park and Charlie Johnston, assistant to his father, Mark, is hopeful she will see out a mile as she teams up with Mickael Barzalona for the first time.

He said: “She has definitely changed a lot from two to three. She is certainly a taller, leaner filly and looks a lot more like a miler than she did last year, so physically there would be a bit more encouragement that she will stay.

“Joe (Fanning) has ridden in all her work so far this spring and he has found her very easy to switch off and relax. Hopefully temperament and physique would indicate that a mile would be OK, but we will find out when she enters the dip.

“I think she has been a bit underestimated in some ways. I think her run in the Morny (second to Earthlight) was the best run of any two-year-old filly of last year, as I think that was above the Cheveley Park and Fillies’ Mile form.”

The Johnston team also field Rose Of Kildare, a dual Group Three winner at the end of last year but an outsider here.

Johnston added: “She owes us nothing from her two-year-old career from her £3,000 purchase price and she has been working great this spring.

“She has been Raffle Prize’s work companion most of the spring, she seems in good order so she has her earned her roll of the dice.”

Charlie Appleby relies on Summer Romance, a Listed winner last year who disappointed on her final start of 2019 when third in a Group Three heat at Salisbury, although Millisle was immediately in front of her.

Appleby said: “She’s one filly I probably would have liked to see in a trial, but she’s developed very well through the winter.

“She was disappointing at Ascot in soft ground and that’s just a race we’ll put a line through. She got upset before in the preliminaries and it just didn’t happen.

“When William (Buick) rode her at Salisbury, he just felt she was a filly that had gone weak by that stage of the year and to put her away.

“She’s done well through the winter and her home work has been pleasing us.”

Watson relishing 1000 Guineas chance with Quadrilateral
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