Horses To Follow » Anodin


All the talk was of Kingman again in the aftermath of the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville on Sunday but, such is the commanding presence of John Gosden’s horse in the media this season, the performance that Anodin put up in finishing second may have gone a little under the radar.

Racing just behind the leaders in the early stages of the race, and disputing last place with Kingman passing the two-furlong pole, he was not able to match Kingman’s burst of acceleration from inside the two-furlong pole – not many can – but he still picked up nicely. He moved between Olympic Glory and Red Dubawi at the furlong pole and kept on well to move into a clear second by the time they reached the winning line, a length in front of Olympic Glory.

There is no shame in getting beaten by two and a half lengths by Kingman, as Anodin was. However, if you remove Kingman from the race for the purposes of analysing Anodin’s performance, it is very good. He showed a nice turn of foot on ground that was probably a fair bit softer than ideal to catch and pass the high-class Olympic Glory. And there is no reason to assume that Olympic Glory did not run his race. He goes well on soft ground, he ran a cracker in this race last year when he was beaten a short head by Moonlight Cloud, and he had a nice run through this race, making his ground when Frankie Dettori wanted him to. This is high-class form, with Coronation Stakes winner Rizeena finishing fourth and German Group 2 winner Red Dubawi back in fifth.

Winner of a Group 3 race last year as a three-year-old, Anodin has progressed significantly this season. A full-brother to Goldikova and a half-brother to Galikova, he finished a really good second to Cirrus Des Aigles in the Prix d’Ispahan on his second run this term, then finished a really good third in the Queen Anne Stakes, a race in which he travelled better than any of his rivals to the furlong pole. That was his last run before Sunday.

Trainer Freddy Head was talking about the Prix de la Foret as a possible next target for the son of Anabaa, followed by a possible tilt at the Breeders’ Cup Mile, and that all makes a lot of sense. The stiff straight mile at Ascot for the Queen Anne just seemed to find him out so, on the easy ground that often prevails on Arc weekend at Longchamp, the drop to seven furlongs for the Foret could suit.

That said, the Breeders’ Cup Mile is an even more exciting project. His sister made that race her own, winning it once at Churchill Downs and twice at Santa Anita, Freddy Head obviously knows what is required to win a Breeders’ Cup Mile, having trained Goldikova and ridden Miesque, who won it twice, and Olivier Peslier said after Sunday’s race that he thought that Anodin would have the characteristics required for that contest.

17th August 2014