The £330,000 Stan James 1000 Guineas has attracted 13 top quality fillies for the 2006 renewal, run over the NatWest Rowley Mile at Newmarket on Sunday, May 7.
Heading the list of runners for the second Classic is the Aidan O'Brien-trained Rumplestiltskin, a dual Group One scorer in 2005 and ante-post favourite at 4/1 with sponsors Stan James. O'Brien also runs Race For The Stars, successful in the Listed Finnforest Oh So Sharp Stakes at Newmarket last season.
The third Irish runner, Alexander Alliance is supplied by Tommy Stack, who sent out Las Meninas to victory in 1994. She ran twice in 2005, putting up an impressive display to win the Listed Flame Of Tara European Breeders Fund Stakes at the Curragh in October.
Godolphin is represented by Silca's Sister, who was last seen out when defeating the colts in the Group One Prix Morny at Deauville in August. This will be the Inchinor filly's first run for the Maktoum family's operation, having previously been trained by Mick Channon.
Channon, seeking his first British Classic victory, relies on Flashy Wings, a four-time winner in 2005. Her triumphs included the Group Two Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot at York and the Group Two Lowther Stakes at York.
Another trainer also searching a first British Classic success is Brian Meehan. The Manton handler runs Donna Blini, who is already a Group One winner at Newmarket, having collected the the Group One Sky Bet Cheveley Park Stakes in September when she defeated Wake Up Maggie and Flashy Wings.
There would surely be no more popular winner on Sunday than Speciosa, trained at Thorney in Cambridgeshire by Pam Sly. The Danehill Dancer filly has won twice previously on the NatWest Rowley Mile course, having taken the Group Two Owen Brown Rockfel Stakes in October and the Group Three Shadwell Nell Gwyn Stakes on her seasonal reappearance last month.
Other leading contenders include Nannina, victorious in the Group One Meon Valley Stud Fillies' Mile over the NatWest Rowley Mile in September and out to provide John Gosden with a second Stan James Guineas win, following Lahan in 2000. The Richard Hannon-trained Nasheej, third in the Meon Valley Stud Valley Stud Fillies' Mile, is set to reoppose, having won on her seasonal debut in the Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury last month.
Sir Mark Prescott saddles his first British Classic runner in Confidential Lady, a Group Three scorer at Deauville last season while the Heath House handler's former assistant Chris Wall runs Wake Up Maggie, runner-up to Donna Blini in last season's Sky Bet Cheveley Park Stakes.
Completing the field are the Jeremy Noseda-trained La Chunga, successful in the Group Three Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot at York last season and Spinning Queen from the Barry Hills yard, runner-up to Speciosa in the Shadwell Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket on April 18.
FASCINATING StanJamesUk.com JOCKEY CLUB STAKES IN PROSPECT
The £90,000 StanJamesUk.com Jockey Club Stakes, also run at Newmarket on Sunday, May 7, has attracted a select field of seven.
The star attraction in the Group Two 12-furlong contest is the Andre Fabre-trained Shirocco, winner of the Grade One Breeders' Cup Turf at Belmont Park in October having previously finished fourth to Hurricane Run in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp. The five-year-old Monsun horse will be making his seasonal debut.
He has to give 2lb and upwards to his six opponents, including Bandari, victorious in last year's Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot at York, and Hard Top, who landed the Great Voltiguer Stakes at York in 2005 before running fifth in the St Leger at Doncaster.
The seven-runner field is completed by Enforcer, Gulf, Munsef and Self Defense.
GROUND & WEATHER UPDATE
The thundery showers which are forecast for Newmarket are now not set to arrive until lunchtime on Saturday, with around three millimetres expected before more prolonged rain arrives Saturday night, which is due to clear on Sunday morning and could bring another six millimetres.
The going remains GOOD-TO-FIRM. As a result of this forecast, the section of track between the three-furlong and two-furlong markers, where the Bushes are, has been watered this lunchtime to the tune of three millimetres.
Michael Prosser, Clerk of the Course, explained: "The "Bushes furlong", as we call it, is always the quickest on the track, partly because it is at the top of an undulation and partly because it has less topsoil. It is where the horses start to quicken as they approach the dip before the final ascent to the winning line, so we want to make sure that there is absolutely no jar in it.
"There is a great covering of grass on the track and moisture remains in the soil underneath as a result of the 10 millimetres of rain that we had on Monday. The weathermen have assured me that rain will arrive and three millimetres tomorrow would freshen it up, but it would still be good, fast ground."
This weekend Newmarket will hold its inaugural "masterclass" interviews on the NatWest Rowley Mile. In the Winner's Enclosure at 1.20pm tomorrow (Saturday), Sam Bullard, Head of Nominations for Darley at their Dalham Hall Stud, will talk in depth about his role in Sheikh Mohammed's worldwide breeding operation. On Sunday at 1pm, top jockeys Kevin Darley and Martin Dwyer will be the interviewees, talking about the life of a Flat jockey, their daily schedule, their fitness and diet regimes and how they approach race riding at the highest level. The interviews, conducted by Lorna Bradburne, will be illustrated by video clips and will be broadcast on the racecourse televisions.
The aim of the masterclasses, which will take place before racing on all Group 1 racedays on the NatWest Rowley Mile this season, is to provide what we hope will be a fascinating insight for racegoers into the roles of a range of high profile racing professionals.
THE STAN JAMES 1000 GUINEAS
Class 1, Group 1, Total Prize Fund £330,000. 3.30pm, Newmarket, Sunday, May 7, 2006. One mile (over the NatWest Rowley Mile Course). For 3-y-o fillies only. Weights: 9st. Entries closed March 1, entries revealed March 7 (85 entries), forfeit stage April 25 (28 remain), £25,000 supplementary entry stage May 1, five-day confirmation stage May 1 (18 remain), final declaration stage 10.00am, May 5 (13 declared). Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including Thursday, May 4, 2006. May not include some overseas form.
1) (8) 21- ALEXANDER ALLIANCE (IRE) (Noel O'Callaghan) Tommy Stack IRE 3-9-00 Wayne Lordan
2) (5) 111210- CONFIDENTIAL LADY (Cheveley Park Stud) Sir Mark Prescott 3-9-00 Seb Sanders
3) (10) 1211- DONNA BLINI (Jayne Cunningham) Brian Meehan 3-9-00 Michael Kinane
11) (3) 203131-1 SPECIOSA (IRE) (Michael Sly, Dr Tom Davies, Pam Sly) Pam Sly 3-9-00 Michael Fenton
12) (13) 435406-2 SPINNING QUEEN (Marston Stud & Cavendish Investing Ltd) Barry Hills 3-9-00 Michael Hills
13) 1(2)12- WAKE UP MAGGIE (IRE) (J Lambton) Chris Wall 3-9-00 Alan Munro
13 declared runners
NB: Form figures in brackets denote all-weather form
Horses removed at the 48-hour declaration stage: ABIGAIL PETT, KAMARINSKAYA (USA), MOSTAQELEH (USA), SAABIQ (USA), SILVER TOUCH (IRE)
Latest Stan James 1000 Guineas betting
4/1 Rumplestiltskin, 5/1 Flashy Wings, 7/1 Nannina, Silca's Sister, Race For The Stars, 11/1 Speciosa, 12/1 Alexander Alliance, 14/1 Nasheej, 16/1 La Chunga, Donna Blini, Confidential Lady, 25/1 Wake Up Maggie, 66/1 Spinning Queen
RECORDS OF TRAINERS WITH RUNNERS IN THE STAN JAMES 1000 GUINEAS
Mick Channon (Flashy Wings)
1995-13 Fleet Hill 100/1
1999-7 Golden Silca 50/1
2000-4 Seazun 10/1
2000-17 Miletrian 66/1
2001-6 Arhaaff 25/1
2002-16 Ya Hajar 66/1
2004-8 Silca's Gift 16/1
2004-9 Majestic Desert 7/1
2005-13 Joint Aspiration 50/1
2005-18 Love Thirty 100/1
CHANNON LOOKING FOR CHAMPIONSHIP POINTER IN LETHEBY & CHRISTOPHER PREDOMINATE STAKES
Mick Channon is hoping that Championship Point can put himself among the leading fancies for the Vodafone Derby with victory in Goodwood's long established Derby trial, the Listed Letheby & Christopher Predominate Stakes.
The 11-furlong Listed contest, which takes place at 2.50pm tomorrow, Saturday, May 6, carries prize money of £35,000 and Channon fields two contenders, Championship Point with Ted Durcan in the saddle and Youmzain who is the mount of Sam Hitchcott.
The West Ilsley trainer reported: "Championship Point is in great form."
Championship Point won two of three starts last term including the Listed Chesham Stakes over seven furlongs at Royal Ascot at York. His final outing of 2005 saw him finish a close second to subsequent Group One Criterium de Saint Cloud victor Linda's Lad in a mile Listed contest at Deauville on August 20, beaten a head.
Channon commented: "Championship Point's form is solid and now we're going to see if he can get the trip. We've got to find out somewhere. Looking at the sire's side, I've got no doubt that he will stay, but on the dam's side it's questionable. He got a mile as a two-year-old on very soft ground giving 5lb to a subsequent Group One winner, so I'm hopeful."
The colt is by the stamina influence Lomitas out of juvenile six-furlong winner Flying Squaw, who landed a Baden-Baden Group Two for Channon in 1995.
The trainer continued: "He goes on all ground but if we could have good ground at Goodwood then that would be perfect for him. We'll have to see how things go, but he's in the Vodafone Derby and if he's worth his chance then he'll take it."
Recent Catterick winner Youmzain is his second runner in the Letheby & Christopher Predominate Stakes which has attracted six declarations. The colt he beat half a length at the Yorkshire course - the Mark Johnston-trained London Express - reopposes while the three others lining up are Sienna Storm from Mark Tompkins' Newmarket yard, the John Dunlop-trained Senor Dali and Fiddlers Wood.
Youmzain, Senor Dali and Sienna Storm also hold Derby entries.
The Letheby & Christopher Predominate Stakes, sponsored by Goodwood's caterers, regularly attracts horses who go on to make their mark at the top level.
First run in 1970, the race was captured by Troy in 1979 en route to victory in the Derby, while other high-class winners have included Pentire in 1995, whose victories included the following year's King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot, and Dubai Millennium in 1999, winner of nine of his 10 starts - four in Group One company - and one of the most exceptional racehorses in recent memory.
There are two other Listed contests on Saturday's quality seven-race card at Goodwood and both are due to have seven runners.
The Listed 32Red.com Lupe Stakes (first race 2.20pm) is a Vodafone Oaks trial and the £35,000 contest is run over just short of 10 furlongs.
Godolphin's Deveron, trained by Saeed bin Suroor and ridden by Kerrin McEvoy, is entered in the Oaks, while the other declared runners are the Dunlop-trained Jaish, another locally-trained filly in Soft Centre from Amanda Perrett's stables, two Newmarket challengers in Nyarhini and In The Fashion, plus the Walter Swinburn-trained Suzy Bliss and John Best's Rising Cross.
Dunlop, also a Goodwood racecourse director, is aiming to enhance his fabulous record in the race which is sponsored for the first time by the UK's favourite online casino and poker room.
The master of Castle Stables at Arundel has taken the prize on five occasions, courtesy of Claxon (1999), Subya (1995), Bulaxie (1994), Gisarne (1993) and Oumaldaaya (1992).
Following a debut win over six furlongs at Nottingham in July last year, Jaish ran twice more, finishing seventh of nine behind Innocent Air in a seven-furlong Listed race at Newbury, and third in a mile Listed event at Newmarket on her final start in October.
Marcus Hosgood, racing secretary to Dunlop, revealed: "Jaish is in good form. She won well first time out at Nottingham and there were reasons for her poor run second time at Newbury. She ran much better when third at HQ at the backend, with stablemate Bunood one place in front of her.
"The trip should suit and I don't think she has any obvious ground preferences. We'll see what happens there before making future plans for her."
The 32Red.com Lupe Stakes has seen some high-class winners in recent years. Love Divine, the impressive four-length scorer in 2000, went on to take the Oaks at Epsom, while last year's victor Something Exciting beat all bar Eswarah in the fillies' Classic.
The £30,000 European Breeders Fund Fillies' & Mares' Conqueror Stakes (5.00pm), run over a mile for three-year-olds and upwards (fillies and mares), is the other Listed prize on the card.
Last year's heroine was Aldora, who followed up her 2003 victory in the same contest when scoring by two lengths under Ian Mongan. Three-year-old Nantyglo, trained by Michael Bell in Newmarket, takes on six four-year-olds - Salamanca, Favourita, Heat Of The Night, Little Miss Gracie, Love Thirty and Sweet Treat.
GOING: Good, good to firm in places on the round course
Goodwood's assistant clerk of the course Seamus Buckley reported this morning: "We had half a millimetre of rain overnight and the going stick reading is 8.5 There is a possibility of a shower or two early on Saturday.
"We're delighted with the state of the course and we couldn't have better conditions at the start of our season for the Classic trials."
TOTESPORT.COM DERBY TRIAL AT LINGFIELD PARK, SATURDAY, MAY 13, 2006
The parasols and flags will be out for the busy summer season at Lingfield Park, Pimms on the lawn, champagne corks popping, the Lingfield Derby and Oaks trials are here again and summer racing really begins on Saturday, May 13.
Lingfield Park Racecourse is delighted to welcome the tote as the new sponsor of the important Derby and Oaks trials that day, plus two other valuable races.
The Group Three 11-furlong totesport.com Derby Trial (2.40pm) promises is one of the most prestigious races of the year at Lingfield Park, with a total prize fund of £60,000.
The trial takes place three weeks before the Vodafone Derby at Epsom, which is perfect timing for the country's best three-year-olds to experience an undulating course with so many similarities Epsom.
Lingfield Park has always been known as the most successful of the specialist trial races due to its configurations.
Racing at Lingfield Park is the closest any Derby horse will experience to Epsom - particularly the left-hand downhill bend into the straight.
Tote Chairman Peter Jones said: "Being the biggest sponsors of racing, the tote is linked with many major races and therefore it is with great pleasure to become involved for the first time with the prestigious Derby and Oaks trials at Lingfield Park.
"The record over the years of horses going on to win at Epsom is quite good, and it would be terrific if our association with the races leads to an even better record!"
The Listed totescoop6 Oaks Trial (3.10pm) is worth £50,000 and the supporting races on the day include the prestigious totesport 0800 221221 Heritage Handicap, worth £60,000 and the Group Three £50,000 totepool Chartwell Fillies Stakes, taking the prize money on the day to a grand total of £241,000.
Mark Jones, Managing Director at Lingfield Park, commented: "I am delighted to welcome the Tote as new sponsors of these high status races at Lingfield Park.
"The course is in great condition. I am very pleased with the pre-raceday sales and, providing we get some good weather, I am confident we will attract a very good crowd."
"It is Lingfield Park's most prestigious day of the year and, despite the course holding nearly 100 meetings a year including Polytrack, jumping and turf Flat, the Derby Trials meeting always creates that special sense of excitement, and is hugely popular with everyone."
Gates open at 12.10pm
Order of Races
2.10 The totesport 0800 221221 Heritage Handicap (Class 2)
Total prize fund £60,000, 7 furlongs. Channel 4 TV
2.40 The totesport.com Derby Trial Stakes (Class 1) (Group 3)
Total prize fund £60,000, 1 mile 3 furlongs. Channel 4 TV
3.10 The totescoop6 Oaks Trial (Class 1) (Listed Race)
Total prize fund £50,000, 1 mile 3 furlongs. Channel 4 TV
3.40 The Edenbridge Maiden Stakes (Class 5)
Total prize fund £6,000, 1 mile 2 furlongs.
4.15 The totepool Chartwell Fillies' Stakes (Class1) (Group 3)
Total prize fund £50,000, 7 furlongs.
4.50 The Lingfield Park Trials Day Handicap (Class 4)
Total prize fund £10,000, 6 furlongs.
5.25 The OCS Group Ladies Handicap (Class 5)
Total prize fund £5,000, 7 furlongs. (Lady Amateur Jockeys)
Children under 16 (accompanied) FREE.
Premiere Enclosure £22
Grandstand Enclosure £17
Restaurant Package to include car parking, Premier Enclosure badge, racecard, four-course meal in the Trackside Restaurant, table for the entire day.
For further enquiries please contact sales and marketing at Lingfield Park
Tel: 01342 834800 or 0870 2200022.
Book on-line www.lingfield-racecourse.co.uk to receive a £2 discount on badges.
Bookings on-line will be taken up to 48 hrs prior to the date of the race meeting.
Facilities and Additional Entertainment for children
Over the past four years, Arena Leisure has spent in excess of £10 million at the Surrey track making huge improvements and changes to facilities for both human and equine patrons. The viewing restaurant is now rated as one of the best racecourse facilities in this country, and is already almost fully booked for this meeting.
All the newly refurbished facilities will be open on the day including:
In the Premier Enclosure enjoy the popular Trackside restaurant catering for 270 customers and sited opposite the winning post with extensive views over the entire track. It is wise to pre-book a table.
Alternatively, the Brasserie with extended conservatory, serving excellent hot and cold buffet style meals with a full bar is a perfect option. There is always a good atmosphere in the Seafood and Champagne bar with patio seating outside.
The Grandstand Enclosure offers an excellent range of bars and food outlets including the Fish and Chip Bar, the Deli Marche serving a wide variety of meals and tasty snacks, and the Trattoria serving fabulous Italian style fayre, which is actually open to patrons of either enclosure.
Clown, face painter and bouncy castle. Shoot for goal - blow up bouncy castle style footy goal score game.
FA Cup final to be shown on dedicated screens around the course and we have two giant screens facing the grandstands one will show all the racing and one to show all the football action.
Lingfield Derby Trial History and data.
Roll of Honour
Year Winner SP Jockey Trainer Owner
2005 Kong 9/2 T Quinn J L Dunlop L Neil Jones
2004 Percussionist 11/4 L Dettori J Gosden the late R Sangster
2003 Franklins Gardens 5/1 D Holland M H Tompkins Mrs M Barwell
2002 Bandari 11/4 K Darley M Johnston A Al-Rostamani
2001 Perfect Sunday 11/8F R Hughes B W Hills K Abdulla
2000 Saddler's Quest 10/3F K Darley G A Butler The Fairy Story Partnership
1999 Lucido 3/1 T Quinn J L Dunlop Mrs H Focke
1998 High-Rise 15/8 L Dettori L M Cumani Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum
1997 Silver Patriarch 5/4F Pat Eddery J L Dunlop Peter S Winfield
1996 Mystic Knight 4/1 L Dettori R Charlton Lady Oppenheimer
1995 Munwar 5/6F W Carson P T Walwyn Hamdan Al Maktoum
1994 Hawker's News 5/1 W R Swinburn Sir M Stoute Sheikh Mohammed
History of the Lingfield Derby Trial
In its 74-year history the Lingfield Park Derby Trial has cemented its position as the most successful of all the specialist trial races - hardly surprising when you consider that Lingfield's configurations are the closest any Derby horse will experience to the unique undulations of Epsom.
The trial was the brainchild of Fred Wilmot, who was clerk of the course in 1932 and obviously saw the similarities between Lingfield racecourse and its Surrey neighbour. Wilmot could hardly have dreamed of a better start when the first winner that year, April The Fifth, who was owned and trained by actor Tom Walls, stormed home by two lengths from Firdaussi and went on to confirm the form at Epsom, landing the spoils in the Derby by three-quarters of a length with his old Lingfield rival back in fifth.
It took just five years for the trial to produce another dual winner when Mid-day Sun won both races by a length and a half. After a fifteen-year barren spell, Lingfield was back amongst the Derby winners in the shape of the Aga Khan's brilliant colt Tulyar, who won seven out of seven during the 1952 season. He hacked up in the Lingfield Park Derby Trial by an easy two lengths before battling tenaciously to win at Epsom from Gay Tune, who was ridden by a 16-year-old whippersnapper named Lester Piggott.
Following Parthia's win in both races in 1959, the Derby Trial went through something of a barren spell, but there was a huge upturn in fortunes at the start of the 1980s and the race subsequently went through a golden period.
Teenoso stopped the rot in 1983, winning the Derby Trial and the 'big one' by three lengths but his efforts were overshadowed two years later by the great Slip Anchor - surely the best ever winner of this race. Henry Cecil's colt, partnered by the brilliant American Steve Cauthen, astonished the Lingfield crowd when sluicing to victory by 10 lengths and then went on to land the Blue Riband impressively at Epsom by a seven lengths. Only the legendary Shergar has won the Derby by a wider margin in the modern era.
In 1988 Luca Cumani's Khayasi made it three Derby winners in six years for the Lingfield Park Classic Trial, giving the present Aga Khan a Lingfield Derby Trial/Derby double. Cumani clearly appreciated the benefit of giving a Derby hopeful a spin on a very similar circuit as he did exactly the same thing 10 years later with High-Rise, who was made to work really hard for both victories, landing the trial by a neck then scraping home by a head in the Derby.
Last year's Lingfield Park Derby Trial runner-up Walk In The Park also came second in the Epsom Classic..
Down the years the Lingfield Park Derby Trial has been responsible for producing plenty of star performers and looks set to do so for many years to come. Aureole (won the Coronation Cup, Hardwicke Stakes and King George, also second in the Derby), Cacoethes (Derby runner-up), Rock Hopper (multiple Group winner), Bob's Return (St Leger winner) and Silver Patriarch (Derby runner-up and St Leger winner) are just a few of the top-class racehorses who clearly appreciated starting off their three-year-old campaigns at Lingfield Park.