Fanunalter causes an upset as House flops
22 Jul 2012 | Report: Ascot, Saturday
Transformers & Rectifiers Summer Mile Stakes (Group 2) 1m 4yo+
Everyone was expecting a royal winner with odds-on favourite Carlton House but it didn't materialise as the Michael Wigham-trained Fanunalter, under Olivier Peslier, caused a 33-1 upset.
The winner just held off the fast-finishing Pastoral Player, the hard luck story of the race, who got every yard of the trip but missed the start.
Tullius completed the placings in third. Carlton House, who was way too keen, finished in a dead heat for fourth.
Winning trainer Wigham wasn't as surprised as you might think. "We just brought him along quietly, we don't gallop a lot, and he's been doing a lot of swimming," he said.
"I'd have to think about [coming back for Champions Day]. We were going to go for a Group 3 in Norway but I think we'll be shelving that now."
All eyes has been on the Queen's 4-7 favourite Carlton House, who had finished third in last year's Derby and second to So You Think in the Group 1 Prince of Wales's at Royal Ascot. Dropping back two furlongs in trip here, he pulled way too hard as Richard Hughes set a very canny pace on Cai Shen.
Although the leader cracked first in the straight, Ryan Moore struggled to shrug him off on the favourite and as the action was unfolding in front, all the while Peslier was biding his time in behind on Fanunalter.
As a gap appeared, the son of Falbrav quickened nicely to take it up and just held off Pastoral Player, who was flying on the far rail and would have won in another stride.
The runner-up's trainer Hughie Morrison was thrilled with his charge's effort, saying: "They didn't go fast enough for him but it was a great run.
"He settled and he's got so much speed. He can quicken and travel and he could go for anything from 7f to 1m. You wouldn't be frightened of going for something like the Moulin or the Foret."
The favourite was disappointing but it was Hughes's tactics that ultimately defeated him. The fact sufficient reserves weren't there suggests he is perhaps not as classy as some people think he is.
£100,000, Group 2 Transformers & Rectifiers Summer Mile (1600m) 1st £56,710.00; 2nd £21,500.00; 3rd £10,760.00; 4th £5,360.00; 5th £2,690.00; 6th £1,350.00
1) FANUNALTER (A Al Kathiri) Michael Wigham 6-9-01 Olivier Peslier  33/1
2) PASTORAL PLAYER (The Pursuits Partnership) Hughie Morrison 5-9-01 Darryll Holland  18/1
3) TULLIUS (IRE) (Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds VI) Andrew Balding 4-9-01 Jimmy Fortune  6/1
4=) CARLTON HOUSE (USA) (The Queen) Sir Michael Stoute 4-9-01 Ryan Moore  4/7 Fav
4=) CAI SHEN (IRE) (Julie Wood) Richard Hannon 4-9-01 Richard Hughes 
6 SET THE TREND (Corbett Stud) David O'Meara 6-9-01 Daniel Tudhope 
7) QUESTIONING (IRE) (HRH Princess Haya of Jordan) John Gosden p4-9-01 William Buick 
8) RED JAZZ (USA) (Ronald Arculli) Charlie Hills 5-9-01 Michael Hills 
Breeder: Azienda Agricola Francesca Breeding: b g Falbrav (IRE) - Step Danzer (IRE) (Desert Prince (IRE))
Time: 1m 41.36s Distances: nk, ¾, 1, dead heat, 1¼, 1¼, ¾