Horses To Follow » Prince Siegfried

Prince Siegfried

Prince Siegfried put up a nice performance to win the 10-furlong listed race at Ayr on Saturday. There was a bit of a depleted look to this race with four potential rivals, including Wasan and Perks, two would-be worthy opponents, taken out on the morning of the race, but the Godolphin horse could hardly have been more impressive than he was, and it is difficult to believe that any of the four non-runners would have got close. Settled in front from flagfall, and probably afforded an easy enough lead, Frankie Dettori took the son of Royal Applause toward the centre of the track in the home straight. It was a strange manoeuvre given that the fastest of the ground at the meeting appeared to be on the far side, but that may have been why Dettori did it, possibly to avoid the firm ground, possibly to minimise the possibility of jarring the horse up. If that was the case, the rider must have been fairly confident in his horse’s superiority over his rivals, and he never had a moment’s worry. He came clear of some useful rivals inside the final two furlongs, including his stable companion Baila Me, a useful looking German recruit, and Dream Lodge, who had finished second in a Group 3 contest at York on his previous start. Prince Siegfried did it easily, he won eased down by four lengths, he could have gone faster, he could have won by more, and the time was good, 0.15secs/furlong faster than standard, the only time on the day that dipped below standard.

Prince Siegfried is now an exciting individual. Beaten just a head by Zafisio in a Group 1 contest at Saint-Cloud on heavy ground at the end of last season when with Andrew Balding, he shaped nicely on his first two starts for Godolphin, and he was impressive in winning a conditions race at Newmarket on his last start before Saturday, making all and staying on well. That run was on easy ground, which he clearly appreciates – Saturday’s ground would have been plenty fast enough for him – and he is an exciting horse now for the autumn when he should get his preferred easy ground. He is good when he can dominate from the front, but he doesn’t have to, and he should be a major player in some of the top 10-furlong races between now and the end of the season. It is a pity that he is not in the Champion Stakes, as he would have been an interesting contender in that on easy ground, which they usually get for that race. He could be that good.

19th September 2009

© The Irish Field, 26th September 2009