Horses To Follow » Mad About You

Mad About You

Mad About You’s performance in beating the colts and geldings in the Group 3 Gladness Stakes at The Curragh on Sunday smacked of quality. She travelled easily through the first couple of furlongs just behind Jumbajukiba, who was on his head the whole way. Pat Smullen actually took a tug at the three-furlong pole so that Mad About You wouldn’t hit the front too early, but by the time they reached the two-furlong pole he could wait no longer. He allowed the filly ease past the long-time leader on the stands side as everything in behind came under pressure. She was two lengths up before Smullen sat down and asked her to quicken. For a moment it looked like she might not find as much as it looked like she would, but that was only for a moment, and she picked up nicely to post a most impressive win in a good time.

It is probable that the re-fitting of the blinkers, which she wore for the first time when so impressive at Naas on her final run last season, was a significant factor in this performance. Trainer Dermot Weld said afterwards that she may have needed the run a little when she got beaten by Oh Goodness Me in the Park Express Stakes over a mile on her seasonal debut last month, when she didn’t find as much as it looked like she would inside the final furlong, but she didn’t wear blinkers that day either, and it is probable that they are a significant help to her now. A top class filly, the Ridgewood Pearl Stakes back at The Curragh looks like the next target for the daughter of Indian Ridge, followed by another tilt at the Pretty Polly Stakes, in which she ran a cracker last season as a three-year-old to go down by just a length and a half to Promising Lead.

Weld says that she is effective from seven furlongs to a mile and a quarter, but it may be that she will prove to be most effective this season at the lower end of that spectrum. She certainly doesn’t lack pace, and she has every chance of gaining the Group 1 prize that her talent deserves this term. The Matron Stakes at Leopardstown on Irish Champion Stakes day should be her long-term objective this season.

5th April 2009