The G2 Princess of Wales’s Stakes will be held at Newmarket on Thursday, a 1m 4f race for horses aged 3 and over. This famous encounter was won by Michael Bell’s Big Orange, in 2015, but which other horses are likely to mount a serious challenge this year?
Sir Michael Stoute’s 4-year-old was sired by Beat Hollow and his dam is Bright And Clear (mother of 5-time winner, Weather Front). Exosphere won the G2 Jockey Club Stakes but disappointed in the Hardwicke Stakes, finishing 8th of 9. Was that just a blip?Exosphere Currently 9/4 At RaceBets – Check Latest Price Now
Second Step is trained by Luca Cumani and the 5-year-old gelding has plenty of doubters to silence, following 5 outings without a win since he beat Telescope and won the 2015 Jockey Club Stakes. The G1 Coronation Cup always looked an ambitious aim, although he did finish almost 5 lengths ahead of Arabian Queen when taking 5th place.Second Steps Currently 4/1 At RaceBets – Check Latest Price Now
Value hunters will be tempted to have a punt on Saeed bin Suroor’s inmate, a Listed winner who also won the King George V Stakes at Ascot in 2014. The Authorized gelding is another 5-year-old and was very unlucky to encounter trouble in-running, when finishing runner-up in the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes (also at Ascot).Elite Army Currently 9/2 At RaceBets – Check Latest Price Now
The Grey Gatsby certainly looks terrific each-way value, while the likes of Red Verdon, Muntahaa, Muntazah and Battersea cannot be ruled out either.
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History of the Princess of Wales’s Stakes
First run in 1894, the Princess of Wales’s Stakes was inaugurated to honour Alexandra, a Dane who became Princess of Wales in the mid-nineteenth century.
This historic fixture is held on the July Course and the winner of the very first race was a runner called Isinglass. This magnificent animal won eleven of his twelve races.
He was owned and bred by Harry McCalmont and trained by James Jewitt. Out of a dam named Dead Lock and sired by Isonomy (winner of the Cambridgeshire Handicap, the Gold Vase, the Ascot Gold Cup, the Goodwood Cup, the Ebor Handicap and the Doncaster Cup), Isinglass won almost sixty thousand pounds in prize-money – an enormous sum, given that all of his wins came in the nineteenth century.
Isinglass took the spoils in the New Stakes (1892), the Middle Park Plate (1892), the 2,000 Guineas (1893), the Newmarket Stakes (1893), the Epsom Derby (1893), the St. Leger Stakes (1893), the Eclipse Stakes (1894), the Jockey Club Stakes (1894)and the Ascot Gold Cup (1895).
He was only the sixth British horse to have won the prestigious Triple Crown and sired three British Classic winners himself (Cherry Lass, Glass Doll and Louvois).
The 2014 winner was a horse called Cavalryman. Trained by Saeed bin Suroor and ridden by Silvestre de Sousa, Cavalryman became the only eight year-old winner of the Princess of Wales’s Stakes in modern times.
Ryan Moore rode back-to-back winners in 2011 and 2012. He followed up his winning ride on Crystal Capella with victory aboard Florente (both horses were trained by Sir Michael Stoute).
An Irish brown stallion, owned and bred by the Ballymacoll Stud, he was foaled in 2008 and his dam is Desert Bloom. Florente is sired by Monsun, a winner of the Frühjahrs Dreijährigen-Preis (1993), the Grosser Hertie-Preis (1993), the Aral-Pokal (1993), the Preis von Europa (1993, 1994), the Gerling-Preis (1994, 1995) and the Hansa-Preis.
Florente’s major wins all came outside of Germany though and include the Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (2013), the Melbourne Cup (2013), the St George Stakes (2014) and the Australian Cup (2014). He was forced to retire, following a serious tendon injury.
Pat Eddery also scooped back-to-back victories and did so with the same horse. The John Dunlop-trained Millenary won in 2002 and 2003. His dam was Ballerina (Dancing Brave) and the name of his sire was Rainbow Quest.
Owned by Neil Jones and bred by Abergwaun Farms, this remarkable bay stallion also won the Chester Vase (2000), the Gordon Stakes (2000), the St. Leger Stakes (2000), the Jockey Club Stakes (2001), the Yorkshire Cup (2004), the Doncaster Cup (2004, 2005), the Jockey Club Cup (2004) and the Lonsdale Cup (2005).
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