Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes (Group 1) | 1m | 3yo+ fillies and mares | ITV3/RTV
William Haggas saddles a two-strong team in this six-runner renewal as One Master and Beshaayir bid to provide the Newmarket trainer with his first Falmouth success.
Market leader One Master finished behind Beshaayir in the Lanwades Stud Stakes at the Curragh on her return in May but stepped up considerably at Royal Ascot when producing a career-best effort on Racing Post Ratings to finish a length third in the Queen Anne Stakes behind Lord Glitters.
The mount of James Doyle was a top-level winner in the Prix de la Foret over 7f at Longchamp last year and Haggas feels this contest is a good fit for the five-year-old.
Haggas said: “We hadn’t originally planned to come here with One Master but the race looked a good spot for her and she’s a Group 1 winner so we decided to give it a go.
“She ran a fantastic race in the Queen Anne and at one point I thought she was going to win but she just didn’t see out the last half furlong.
“She’s a genuine, lovely filly, who might not quite be at her best over a mile, but she’s pretty good over seven furlongs.
Beshaayir scored in Group-race company at the first attempt when successful in Ireland and has just 4lb to find on official ratings with her stablemate.
Haggas said of the Frankie Dettori-ridden Beshaayir: “She will be suited by the good to firm ground and won nicely in Ireland so I hope she can put in a good performance.
“I have not had many shots at the Falmouth in the past but it would be a lovely race to win."
Roger Varian is another trainer seeking his first victory in the Group 1 contest and runs Qipco 1,000 Guineas third Qabala and last year’s Oh So Sharp Stakes scorer Mot Juste.
Qabala and Mot Juste secured a 1-2 for Varian in the Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes at the Rowley Mile course in May but the first-named failed to fire in the Irish 1,000 Guineas following her highly promising effort in the British equivalent.
Varian, who saddled last year’s runner-up Altyn Orda, said of Andrea Atzeni’s mount: “You can put a line through Qabala's effort in the Irish Guineas where she could not get a run and she is training better than I've ever had her.
“A return to her third in the Guineas here would make her very competitive.”
Three-year-olds have won the last three renewals of the race and Varian saddles the only runners to fit that age criteria with the David Egan-ridden Mot Juste bidding to bounce back from her 13th placed finish in the 1,000 Guineas.
Varian said: “Mot Juste did not get a great trip in the 1,000 Guineas when we fancied her to run a big race and she’s the slightly forgotten filly.
“She's been pleasing me and fast ground suits her well."
O’Brien pins hopes on I Can Fly
Aidan O’Brien has celebrated Falmouth victory in two of the last three years and relies on Duke Of Cambridge third I Can Fly.
The former Group 2 winner finished a length and a half behind Beshaayir at the Curragh but ran her best race of this campaign when two lengths behind Move Swiftly at Royal Ascot last month.
O'Brien said: "She ran a very good race when third in the Duke Of Cambridge at Royal Ascot and came out of the race well. She's in good form."
Alice Springs provided O’Brien with a first triumph in the Falmouth in 2016 and Roly Poly repeated the feat the following year, while Clemmie finished third behind Alpha Centauri last year.
Veracious bids to build on Ascot promise
Owner-breeders Cheveley Park Stud struck with the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Integral in 2014 and bid to repeat the feat with last year’s Atalanta Stakes winner Veracious.
Oisin Murphy rode Veracious for the first time at Royal Ascot, where she finished a staying-on fourth, and retains the mount.
The four-year-old was a beaten favourite in the Dahlia Stakes and Princess Elizabeth Stakes earlier this year but the promise of her latest effort suggested she is nearing her peak.
Jockey Oisin Murphy said: "I'm really looking forward to riding her again and she ran a super race at Ascot where we just struggled to get some cover early on.
"Sir Michael Stoute has his horses in great form and I'm thankful to keep the ride. It looks a very tight affair with One Master bringing strong form and Beshaayir winning well in Ireland last time, but I'm hopeful Veracious can run well."