Duchess of Cambridge Stakes 2016

The G2 Duchess of Cambridge Stakes  (won by Illuminate in 2015) will be held on Friday, at Newmarket. Which 2-year-old fillies are being backed?


Bletchley won on debut, at Nottingham, beating John Gosden’s Reeh by just a neck. Few gave Ralph Beckett’s inmate much of a chance and she went off at odds of 25/1. She then went to Ascot, for the G3 Albany Stakes and was again unfancied. However, none of the short-priced horses performed and she was beaten just a short head by Aidan O’Brien’s Brave Anna (also a long-shot). The cat is now well and truly out of the bag though and she’ll be amongst the favourites for this season’s Duchess of Cambridge renewal.

Roly Poly

Brave Anna has not been entered, but O’Brien has another strong hope in Friday’s race. Roly Poly was sired by War Front and is out of a dam called Misty For Me. She won on debut at Naas, then found the company too hot to handle in black-type encounters at the Curragh and Ascot. Undaunted, she returned to the Curragh less than a fortnight ago and landed the G3 Grangecon Stud Stakes at the expense of Seafront. Roly Poly should go close.


Charlie Appleby’s charge has been given just one outing, winning comfortably at Haydock. She beat Nations Alexander by 3 lengths and that form was recently given a huge boost when Richard Hannon’s juvenile won the Listed Empress Stakes here on June 25th. Nasimi is a Shamardal filly and might just be the value in this race.

Other horses in with a shout include Asiduous Alexander, Kilmah and Magical Fire. Soul Silver and Somebody To Love have both won, but this will be a big step-up.

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History Of The Duchess of Cambridge Stakes

Formerly known as the Cherry Hinton Stakes, the Duchess of Cambridge Stakes is a six furlong Newmarket Sprint. The event was first held in 1947, just after the Second World War ended and the purse is now eighty thousand pounds. The race is held on the July Course and runners carry nine stones in weight. There is a three pounds penalty for any horse that has come first in a Group 1 or Group 2 fixture.

The Duchess of Cambridge Stakes was made a Group 3 race in 1971 and promoted to Group 2 in 1996. The race takes place on day 2 of the famous July Meeting. The Duchess of Cambridge Stakes is seen as an important early indicator for the following season’s 1,000 Guineas.

The 2014 renewal was won by a horse called Arabian Queen, which was trained by David Elsworth and ridden by Ryan Moore. It was the first Duchess of Cambridge Stakes victory for both the trainer and jockey.

Kevin Darley rode Attraction to victory in 2003. This Scottish bay thoroughbred was out of a dam called Flirtation and sired by Efisio. Owned by the Duke of Roxburghe, bred by Floors Farming and trained by Mark Johnston, Attraction also won the Queen Mary Stakes (2003), the 1,000 Guineas (2004), the Irish 1000 Guineas (2004), the Coronation Stakes (2004), the Sun Chariot Stakes (2004) and the Matron Stakes (2005).

She was named European Champion Two-Year-Old Filly and British Champion Two-Year-Old Filly, in 2003. She was retired to stud at Floors Castle and her best known offspring include Fountain Of Youth, Cushion, Subtraction, Devastation and Elation.

The Giles Bravery-trained Torgau took the spoils in 1999. Despite winning no other race of genuine class, she was named Cartier Champion Two Year Old Filly in that year – a huge achievement. The award recognised the fact that this Irish thoroughbred came second in both the Moyglare Stud Stakes and the Cheveley Park Stakes. She was retired after two poor runs in her Classic campaign.

Lester Piggott was on-board Lemon Souffle, the 1993 champion. Owned by Lord Carnarvon, trained by Richard Hannon and bred by the Highclere Stud, Lemon Souffle was out of a dam called Melodrama and sired by Salse.

She was also named European Champion Two-Year-Old Filly and went on to win the Moyglare Stud Stakes and the Falmouth Stakes. As a stud horse, she gave birth to Ostrovsky, Bois de Citron and Dolce Limone.

Diminuendo won the race in 1987. Bred by Nancy S Dillman, owned by Sheikh Mohammed and trained by the late Sir Henry Cecil, she went on to win the Fillies’ Mile (1987), the Musidora Stakes (1988), the Gold Seal Oaks (1988), the Irish Oaks (1988) and the Yorkshire Oaks (1988).

Newmarket plays host to some of the most important flat races for fillies and you can bet on every single Newmarket fixture, if you have an active RaceBets.com account. Join now!


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