The Falmouth Stakes
The Falmouth Stakes (4.15 Newmarket Fri 8th June) is a 1-Mile Group-1 race, and is one of the most prestigious races that is open solely to fillies. It is named after the 6th Viscount Falmouth, and earned Group-1 status in 2004.
The last 10 renewals have been won by four 3-year-olds and six 4-year-olds, but it’s the 4-year-olds who have won the last 5. Meanwhile, no jockey, owner or trainer has won more than one of the last 10 renewals, though 2 French trained horses have won in this period.
7 runners are set to go to post for the 2016 Falmouth Stakes.
She won 4 of her 5 races before tackling group-2 company for the first time at Royal Ascot, where she finished 2-lengths behind likely favourite Usherette (who was conceding her 3lb). She may be better suited to better ground here, but she needs to improve to win.
Last year’s winner beat Usherette in France last year, but finished 5½ lengths behind that filly when only third over course and distance earlier in the year. However, she did take a couple of runs to find her best form last year, and her stable is in the best form it’s been in all season. She can also be excused her run at Royal Ascot, where she would have hated the ground, and will prefer this quicker surface.
Runner-up in the 2015 French Guineas, but has yet to convince that she’s a filly that will win a Group-1 against the quality of opposition she meets here. Also finished behind both Usherette and Amazing Maria earlier in the season.
She’s been the star filly of the season so far, and has travelled twice to Britain to take Group-2 honours back to Britain. Yet to win a Group-1, but conceded 3lb to all her rivals at Royal Ascot. The possible chink in her armour is never having run on ground with firm in the description, but will be difficult to beat none the less.
Third in the Tattersalls Millions at two, she improved to win two Group-2 races at Meydan this year, but flopped when stepping-up to Group-1 level there.
So far this season she’s been third in the 1,000 Guineas, seventh in the French 1,000 Guineas, and third at Royal Ascot. She may well appreciate the quicker ground, and gets plenty of weight off the older horses, but she doesn’t look top-class.
Her 2-year-old form doesn’t look as good now as it did then, but she still landed a group-3 on the all-weather on her seasonal debut. Her trainer has stated that she needs fast ground, so she can be excused her run at Royal Ascot, but still needs to find plenty to trouble the principals.
The Falmouth Stakes Summary
Victory for Usherette will come as no surprise as she fits the stats, but this will be her third foray to England this year, and the ground many be a little quicker than ideal for her. Therefore, it looks worth giving last year’s winner Amazing Maria a chance, as her stable have really hit form this week, and she should be at her peak.