John Gosden and Frankie Dettori’s awesome autumn continued at Longchamp on Sunday when Irish Oaks heroine Star Catcher made nearly all the running to capture the Group 1 Prix Vermeille (1m4f).
Having lost ground when leaving the stalls, Dettori and Star Catcher recovered quickly to take the lead. The duo never looked like being caught and had three quarters of a length to spare over Musis Amica at the line.
Also at Longchamp on Sunday, the Peter Brant-owned Sottsass overcame trouble in running to capture the Group 2 Prix Niel (1m4f).
Warming up for next month’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, the three-year-old was stuck behind the pacemakers as the race entered its final stages. Jockey Cristian Demuro elected to not move his mount out and when a gap finally emerged, the Prix du Jockey Club winner showed an electric turn of foot to surge to victory.
Bearstone Stud’s homebred Glass Slippers took the Group 3 Prix du Petit Couvert (5f) and Waldgeist showed his class to win the Group 2 Prix Foy (1m4f).
Galileo to the fore
Coolmore’s perennial champion sire Galileo supplied four stakes winners on the first day of Irish Champions Weekend at Leopardstown on Saturday and on Sunday, he was responsible for two Group 1 victors at the Curragh.
The first of those was the Aidan O’Brien-trained Love, who stayed the best out of the nine runners in the Moyglare Stud Stakes (7f).
That was followed by Search For A Song’s victory in the Irish St Leger (1m6f), which took Galileo’s number of top-level winners to 82.
Sandwiched in between the Moyglare Stud Stakes and the Irish St Leger, Godolphin homebred Pinatubo showcased his talents with a nine-length demolition of the opposition to capture the Group 1 Vincent O’Brien National Stakes (7f).
In the Pat Smullen Champions Race For Cancer Trials Ireland, Sir Anthony McCoy got the better of old friend and rival Ruby Walsh by making all on the Sheila Lavery-trained Quizical.
Old Persian strikes at Woodbine
Godolphin’s colours were carried to victory in the Grade 1 Northern Dancer Turf Stakes (1m4f) on Saturday by Old Persian, who was winning at the highest level for the first time since taking the Dubai Sheema Classic in March.
Alex Merriam, Godolphin representative, said: “Old Persian didn’t run great in the Coronation Cup at Epsom, but that was coming back after a good effort in Dubai, and we were pleased enough with his run in Germany.
“They have gone a strong gallop, which suited Old Persian, and James [Doyle] has given him a nice ride. It has worked out well.”
The Woodbine Mile went to Gail Cox-trained El Tormenta, a homebred for Canadian breeders Sam-Son Farm.
Brighton, Thirsk and Kempton (aw) all stage Flat meetings today while Worcester holds an afternoon jumps card. Over in Ireland, Galway hosts a jumps fixture.
In France, Maisons-Laffitte’s card includes the Group 3 Prix Eclipse (6f) and the Group 3 La Coupe (1m2f).
It is the Prix Eclipse that provides British interest as trainer Ed Walker and jockey Oisin Murphy combine with Nina Bailarina in the five-runner race.
The Brightwalton Bloodstock homebred shed her maiden tag in impressive fashion at Newmarket last month when scooting to a five-length success over Strawberry Hind.