Horses To Follow » Antara


Antara looked good in winning the Group 3 Princess Elizabeth Stakes over a mile at Epsom last Saturday. The Godolphin filly travelled really well through the race, came through easily to take it up just outside the furlong marker, looked like she was going to do it easily, but had a fight on her hands when Reggane got going and came through to challenge. However, Frankie Dettori, who appeared to have been intent on giving Antara as easy a time of it as possible, suddenly got more animated as Reggane loomed with the momentum in her favour, and it was impressive that Antara was able to pick up again to repel the French filly, which she did readily enough in the end. There are those who will argue that Reggane was unlucky, that she was given a lot to do by Gerald Mosse, and she was, but it is difficult to argue that the best filly in the race didn’t win it.

The daughter of Platini is a likeable filly, she had nice early pace to get and hold a good position, she settled well, she travelled well, she quickened to take it up and she quickened again when Reggane came to her. Reggane isn’t far off Group 1 class, as she proved when she finished second to Ghanaati in the Coronation Stakes last year, and Antara was giving her 3lb, so it was a fine performance, with the front pair drawing clear of their rivals. Dettori said afterwards that she didn’t handle the downhill run that well, she should be even more effective on a more conventional track, but she did handle the fast ground well, which is significant given that all her wins in her native Germany have been on good or softer ground. Her last run before this, her last in Germany, was in a 10-furlong Group 3 race at Hoppegarten which she won by eight lengths, with the ex-Henry Cecil-trained Tempelstern, who boasted a rating of 114 when he raced here, back in third. Antara should improve on this, her first run for Godolphin, and she could be a really exciting filly this season. Next up could be the Windsor Forest at Royal Ascot, and she will be a major contender in that if she takes her chance in it.

5th June 2010

© The Irish Field, 12th June 2010