Five things we learnt from Super Saturday - excluding the July Cup
Saturday 15 July 2017
Super Saturday was not all about the July Cup at Newmarket. Tom Peacock kept his eye on events all over Britain
By Tom Peacock
Klimt not yet a masterpiece:
Certainly it was a visually arresting performance from Gustav Klimt to win the bet365 Superlative Stakes.
Ryan Moore’s mount was almost brought to his knees in behind horses as the jockey searched for room, was switched across the track and picked up in a style that would suggest he would have been a very easy winner otherwise.
But 7-1 for next year’s 2000 Guineas? No thanks. Put simply, this race has not been a frequent supplier of a truly elite two-year-old with most of the recent additions to its roll of honour being forgettable individuals. This full-brother of the good-if-not-exactly-outstanding Mars and Wonderfully also only finished ahead of Nebo, whose limitations looked exposed in the Coventry Stakes.
Aidan O’Brien himself seems to have sometimes used it to test the water with lesser Ballydoyle inmates and while Gustav Klimt could easily buck the trend and go into winter quarters as a live Classic colt, it is still early days and he needs to win a proper Group One first.
Godolphin shows its Charm:
Coolmore were entitled to believe that they have an authentic Classic filly for next year in Friday’s Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes winner Clemmie and the Godolphin are probably feeling the same.
While Clemmie is a sister of dual Classic winner Churchill, Poetic Charm is also bred to be a star as her half-brother is champion two-year-old Teofilo.
Trained by Charlie Appleby, she looked a well-made and clearly useful sort in the Rossdales EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies' Stakes, holding off Coolmore’s previously experienced Sizzling with a few talked-up juveniles from the bigger stables in behind.
Appleby was quick to nominate the Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh in September, a race which would appear a likely target for Clemmie and we can share the trainer’s view that “she is a filly with a bright future”.
You can’t keep Doyle down:
It's a quick-fire double for James Doyle as he guides Ballet Concerto to victory in the 58th John Smith's Cup Handicap. pic.twitter.com/YGlpy3qEgi— York Racecourse (@yorkracecourse) July 15, 2017
James Doyle has had quite a few blips in the last year or so, with injuries, falling out of favour at Godolphin and even his hefty whip ban after victory in last weekend’s Coral-Eclipse.
Whether any of this has affected his riding standards temporarily would be a valid argument but his efforts of late have been far more reminiscent of his emergence in the big time in 2013, when he seemed to be able to win on horses that might have not done so for others.
Doyle was superb aboard Godolphin’s possible Melbourne Cup contender Rare Rhythm in keeping his mount next to the rail and driving him out ahead of Barsanti in the John Smith's Silver Cup Stakes, then keeping cooler aboard Sir Michael Stoute’s Ballet Concerto in the bustle of the 58th John Smith's Cup.
Particularly liked in the media for his helpfulness in good times and bad, it is pleasing to see him back in fashion.
Fingers crossed for Mutakayyef:
There was some concern as to Mutakayyef’s wellbeing after he successfully defended the Fred Rowley Memorial MBE Summer Mile at Ascot by running down the tearaway Kaspersky.
Dane O’Neill dismounted after the line with the feeling something was amiss and although the winner was led into the winner’s enclosure, he was later taken off for some assessment.
The big chestnut has been better than ever at six, finishing an honourable second to Ribchester in the Queen Anne, and trainer William Haggas has long believed he has a Group One in him.
Let’s hope he gets the chance to have a go at a few more.
Cover and Danzeno roll back the years:
Much of the attention was on the young brigade of sprinters headed by Harry Angel in the Darley July Cup, with the efforts of some rather more grizzled speed merchants somewhat overlooked.
Take Cover, an honourable fifth in the King’s Stand, is more than three times the age of Harry Angel and showed no waning in his enthusiasm when winning a John Smith's City Walls Stakes at York that he last picked up in 2014. That year Norcroft Park Stud’s homebred also won the first of two King George Stakes and trainer David Griffiths will point him in the direction of Goodwood for a third.
Danzeno was also a Group One-placed sprinter a couple of years ago and returned from the wilderness with a thoroughly commendable victory in the valuable totescoop6 Heritage Handicap at Ascot. On a mark of 104 and joint top weight here, the six-year-old is clearly not finished yet either.