Ralph Beckett would have preferred the ground on the Rowley Mile to be bordering on testing for his supplemented filly Moonstone Magic in Sunday’s Qipco 1,000 Guineas, but he still believes she will run well on ground expected to be just on the slow side of good, despite nearly three inches of rain having fallen on Newmarket in the past week.
This rapidly-improving filly has got under the guard of her trainer, hacking up by eight lengths on her debut in a Leicester maiden and then running away with the Group Three Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury, establishing excellent credentials for a crack at the Classic.
Lord and Lady Marchwood have paid £30,000 to get their home-bred filly into the field, which now comprises 21 entries. “It’s a bold decision [to supplement] but I’m behind them all the way,” Beckett said.
“It was a difficult decision for them, but they may never get another chance like this. It would add value to the filly and the mare, as well, if she could sneak a place.”
Connections had been hoping the desperate weather conditions experienced throughout much of the country would also have an effect on Newmarket. But, with its wide open spaces, the strong winds have dried the tracks remarkably well, though the exact going at the weekend is still open to debate. Beckett said: “We would have preferred the ground to be like Sandown last Saturday [heavy], but Michael Prosser [the Newmarket clerk of the course] is usually very accurate with his predictions, and if I’m reading him correctly, it is a shade of odds-on that it will be good to soft.”
Prosser said on Monday that Newmarket had probably got off lightly during the past week, in which there has been torrential rain. “We’ve got the most free-draining course in the country. From my experience, we are not going to have extremes of going at the weekend,” he said.
story By HOTSPUR (J A McGrath), courtesy of The Telegraph (UK)