By Simon Jackson at Royal Ascot.
The Coral-Eclipse Stakes at Sandown on July 5 has been mooted as a likely target for The Fugue after her victory in the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes on the second day of Royal Ascot.
The Fugue caused an upset of sorts to score by a length and three quarters from Magician with the 2013 Arc winner and 8-13 favourite Treve finishing a disappointing third.
The victory provided just recompense for The Fugue who has suffered several near misses in the top flight that included a desperately unlucky third place in the 2012 Investec Oaks when she was all but brought down in the early stages.
This time the race panned out perfectly for the talented daughter of Dansili and Twyla Tharp who provided trainer John Gosden with his second feature race victory of Royal Ascot 2014, following the success of Kingman in the St James’s Palace Stakes on Tuesday.
“It’s lovely to win the two big races,” Gosden said. “I actually walked down with the Princess Royal and said there’s something interesting about this race – it’s all about girl power with Treve and this filly.
“It didn’t work, the trip to Dubai and training in the winter, but The Fugue has come back. She was like a little bud – she went tight but now she has flowered and she looked great.
“The Fugue got knocked over in the Oaks – she got absolutely creamed and nearly went on the ground. She remains a brave, lovely filly and the Lloyd-Webber’s are super owner-breeders. They don’t have many horses in training and, to have a filly of this quality who can beat the colts, is what this game is all about.
“You can now look at races like the Eclipse and the Juddmonte International. You look at those two races and hope that we have summer weather. The Fugue doesn’t like soft ground, with her little feet like a ballerina, so if it’s soft we don’t run.
“She is a five-year-old now and it was very good of the Lloyd-Webbers to keep her in training. She is now fully developed and is a powerful and magnificent filly – we are lucky to have her to train.”
Winning jockey William Buick added: “Her performances in the past, since she first won her maiden, have all been at the very top level.
“She has been in every battle and has passed with credit.
“I haven’t seen the replay, but it rode like a race where everyone had their chance.
“The vibes about her before the race were good. We had to respect Treve but we had confidence in our own horse.
“These mile and a quarter races are where she is at her best. I wouldn’t say that she doesn’t stay a mile and a half, but she is best at a mile and a quarter.
“To win the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes on her means the world to me.”
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