Sky Lantern to light up Newmarket in Falmouth Stakes
Sky Lantern was arguably the most impressive winner of the week at Royal Ascot. Her impressive victory when circling the entire field to win the Coronation Stakes confirmed her status as the leading filly of her generation.
In Friday’s Group 1 Falmouth Stakes she meets her elders for the first time when last year’s first and second line up alongside her. French-trained Giofra and John Gosden’s Elusive Kate are joined by Purr Along in a four-runner field.
Richard Hannon’s grey was surprisingly beaten on her seasonal debut in the Nell Gwyn Stakes when Sir Henry Cecil’s Hot Snap left her two and quarter lengths behind. She was a different proposition in the 1000 Guineas where Richard Hughes produced her fast and late to catch Just The Judge and win by half a length.
The Guineas runner-up went on to win decisively in Ireland so their rematch was eagerly awaited. That came in the Coronation Stakes where both horses were handicapped by a wide draw.
Jamie Spencer elected to chase Just The Judge up early to get into a good position whilst Hughes sat in rear and made up the ground in the short straight. Sky Lantern arrived swinging on the bridle and went four lengths clear of Kenhope.
Elusive Kate made a belated seasonal debut in the Queen Anne Stakes and may have run a little too freely for her own good. She stuck on well enough in fourth behind Declaration of War but should be better for the run.
She showed herself a top class filly last season and was just touched off by Giofra here 12 months ago. The French-trained mare has not won since but has been running consistently in Group 1 events.
The field is completed by rank outsider Purr Along, the mount of Frankie Dettori. Her best effort was when just beaten by Certify in the May Hill last season. She made no show in the Coronation Stakes and has a lot to find to win this.