Horses To Follow » Snow Fairy

Snow Fairy

Snow Fairy put up a taking performance to win the Height Of Fashion Stakes at Goodwood on Wednesday. She actually stumbled quite badly at the start, and Eddie Ahern did quite well to stay on board, with the result that she was last of the nine runners through the early stages of the race. She was still last passing the three-furlong pole, and the early pace that Robert Havlin set on Deirdre wasn’t breakneck, but Ahern didn’t seem to be unduly anxious. He eased her off the rail a furlong and a half out, and was still happy to sit for a few strides about three lengths off the pace before he asked her to pick up. When he did, the response was impressive. Snow Fairy improved impressively down the centre of the track, she did move a little to her right as she joined Deirdre in front, but she was quickly straightened up again, and she pulled clear to win impressively from Pipette who ran on well to take second place.

Snow Fairy was not lightly-raced last year, but she progressed as the season developed, finishing well to take third place, just a nose and a short head behind Sent From Heaven in the Group 3 Prestige Stakes over seven furlongs at Goodwood on her penultimate start. She had never been beyond seven furlongs before, so a step up to 10 furlongs here was a step into the unknown, but it looks to have been the making of her, she seems to have improved markedly for it. She doesn’t look like a middle distance filly on first glance at her pedigree, by champion miler Intikhab out of Charnwood Forest mare from the family of sprinter Patavellian, but she is also from the family of Derby winner Oath, and there is no doubt that she stays this 10-furlong trip well. Indeed, she gave the impression that she might even appreciate further. The winning time was good, the fastest comparative time of the day, a faster comparative time than Rewilding clocked in the Cocked Hat Stakes (the old Predominate) an hour later, and it is reasonable to expect that she will progress from this, her seasonal debut.

Trainer Ed Dunlop, who trained Ouija Board to win the 2004 Oaks, has spoken of supplementing Snow Fairy to the Oaks next month, and that is significant. She would not be out of place at Epsom on this showing in a weak-looking year.

19th May 2010