Dawn Approach and Reckless Abandon both maintained their spotless records when landing the Dewhurst Stakes and the Middle Park Stakes, run back-to-back on Newmarket Dubai-sponsored Future Champions’ Day card on Saturday.
The two colts have taken different paths all summer and, whether or not they will meet next year in the 2,000 Guineas, they are both ultimately destined for Darley’s stallion barns, with Dawn Approach having been bought mid-season by Sheikh Mohammed to race in the blue of Godolphin, while Reckless Abandon was bought by Darley but has remained in the colours of Julie Deadman and Stephen Barrow.
What will have come as an enormous relief to their trainers – Jim Bolger and Clive Cox – is that both colts have stayed put at the stables from which they started their unbeaten runs and will remain in place for next season.
Dawn Approach, who was also bred by Bolger from the Phone Trick mare Hymn Of The Dawn, was quick off the blocks, taking the very first juvenile race of the season in Ireland on March 25. The strong chesnut colt has proved to be no early flash in the pan, however, backing up that early win with victory in a conditions race in May, followed by Listed success in the Rochestown Stakes at Naas in early June.
His first foray outside his native Ireland was at Royal Ascot, where he got the better of subsequent Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere winner Olympic Glory in the Coventry Stakes before notching his first Group 1 strike in the National Stakes at the Curragh. He not only emulates his sire New Approach in winning the Dewhurst but also in remaining unbeaten throughout his two-year-old season for Bolger.
Reckless Abandon wasn’t out quite as early as Dawn Approach but he still made a relatively precocious debut in May when winning a Doncaster maiden. Projected straight into Group company at Royal Ascot, the British-bred son of Exchange Rate won the Norfolk Stakes and followed up with two successful outings to France in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin and the Group 1 Prix Morny.
Reckless Abandon’s final victory of his juvenile campaign was a hard-fought win in the hands of Gerard Mossé, who has ridden his in his last three starts. Managing to grab the rail from a difficult draw, he made most of the running before being headed by joint-favourite Moohaajim in the final furlong.
Showing the class and determination of the good horse he is, Reckless Abandon clawed his way back to the front in the shadow of the post to gain the judge’s verdict by a neck and to give fans of racing plenty to argue about in the next few weeks before the title of champion two-year-old colt is settled.