Emphatic Listed win for Moohaarib

30 April 2015

THE WATERSHIP Down Stud-bred Moohaarib ran out an emphatic winner of the Listed Paradise Stakes at Ascot on Wednesday afternoon, 29th April 2015.

The four-year-old heralds from one of the stud’s most successful families. His dam, Evita, is out of foundation mare Darara, making her a half-sister to Group 1 winners Dar Re Mi, Rewilding, River Dancer and Dariyoun.

He was purchased on behalf of owner Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum for 230,000gns at the Craven Breeze-up Sale in 2013.

Trained by Marco Botti, Moohaarib had a progressive profile in 2014 winning three times and ending the year with a close fifth in Listed company in France.

He shaped with promise when third in the Lincoln on his seasonal debut and stepped up on that to record an easy victory in this mile event.

Jockey Martin Harley tracked the pace aboard Moohaarib and he travelled strongly in behind. He cruised up with two furlongs to run and quickened clear to win eased down by a length and a quarter.

Trainer Marco Botti said: “I was going to scratch Moohaarib with the ground being so fast, but he surprised me. He´s come on since the Lincoln and we might go for the - Lockinge now with the way he won there.”

Image courtesy of Matthew Webb Racing Photography


Classic Trial Victory for Master Apprentice

24 April 2015

MASTER Apprentice put up a gutsy performance to land the Group 3 Classic Trial at Sandown this afternoon.

The son of Mastercraftsman is out of Watership Down Stud mare Lady Hawkfield. Lady Hawkfield is a daughter of Hoity Toity, making her a half-sister to multiple Group 1 winner Lillie Langtry.

Master Apprentice, trained by Andrew Balding, won his maiden at Windsor last season before contesting the Group 1 Criterium International at Saint-Cloud.

Making his seasonal debut today he was sent into the lead early on by jockey David Probert.

Probert set the fractions to perfection and kicked as they entered the straight. His rivals were at full stretch and Master Apprentice galloped relentlessly on.

He had to dig deep to repel the late rattle of Cape Clear Island but the line came in time and he held on by three-quarters of a length.

Balding said: “We have always liked him and he contested a Group 1 at the end of last year.

“There are plenty of trials coming up and we thought that the track here would suit him. David has given him a great ride from the front – he is riding with plenty of confidence.

“He is a solid horse with a good attitude. I have never really thought of him as an Epsom horse. I’d say we’ll look at one of the Ascot races for him.”

Lady Hawkfield is due to foal any day. She is carrying to leading two-year-old sire Kodiac.

(Photograph by GJ Multimedia)


Close second for Jellicle Ball

21 April 2015

LORD and Lady Lloyd-Webber’s famous pink colours were carried by the exciting Jellicle Ball, who finished second in Saturday’s Group 3 Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.

The John Gosden-trained filly won her maiden in impressive fashion at Kempton last October and this was a very encouraging start to her three-year-old campaign.

She was settled towards the rear of the field under Ryan Moore, who gave his mount time to find her feet and relax.

She travelled smoothly throughout and picked up well inside the closing stages, passing a number of her rivals.

The eventual winner, Redstart, had got first run but Jellicle Ball ran strongly to the line and was beaten just three-quarters of a length.

Gosden said: “It was a great run. Jellicle Ball got left in the gate but finished very strongly. She was just a bit green. We´ll head towards the Guineas, but Royal Ascot is the big plan.”

Jellicle Ball was purchased for the Lord and Lady Lloyd-Webber by Charlie Gordon-Watson as a yearling. She is by top stallion Invincible Spirit out of Dance Troupe, a daughter of Rainbow Quest.

She is a half-sister to Group 3 winner Puncher Clynch from the family of Sea Of Heartbreak and Self Defense.

Photograph courtesy of GJMultimedia Ltd., ©2015


De Treville strikes at Longchamp

13 April 2015

DE TREVILLE made a winning start to 2015 when taking a ten-furlong conditions event at Longchamp on Sunday afternoon.

The son of Oasis Dream is the first foal out of Lord and Lady Lloyd-Webber’s star mare Dar Re Mi. Dar Re Mi won three Group 1s and over £2.5 million on the racetrack and her talent and durability is clearly being passed on to her offspring.

De Treville, who was purchased by Charlie Gordon-Watson for 850,000 gns as a yearling, won his maiden last season for Andre Fabre before finishing second in a Group 3.

Upped in trip, De Treville travelled strongly under Pierre-Charles Boudot before out battling Riven Light to win by a short head.

De Treville is now likely to head to a trial for the Prix Du Jockey Club; either the Prix Hocquart (Gr.2) or the Prix de Guiche (Gr.3).

De Treville is the latest exciting prospect to emerge from one of Watership Down Stud’s strongest families. He is a grandson of the great Darara, who was purchased as a foundation mare back in 1994.

Darara produced four individual Group 1 winners; the aforementioned Dar Re Mi, Rewilding- winner of the Dubai Sheema Classic and the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes, Diaghilev and Darazari. The latter pair won at the top-level in Hong Kong and Australia respectively.