Horses To Follow » Tapestry


Tapestry ran a really big race in the circumstances to finish second in the Darley Irish Oaks on Saturday, beaten just a neck by her stable companion Bracelet.

First, there was the delay to the start of the race caused by the need to alter Volume’s footwear. You can argue that it was the same for all 10 fillies, that there was the potential for all of them to get worked up as they waited to go down to the start. However, Tapestry is apparently a more uptight filly than most. Aidan O’Brien says that she usually goes out with first or second lot because she would be too worked up if she had to wait for second lot. So it was not surprising that she appeared to get more worked up than most of her rivals before the start, that the delay was a greater negative for her than it was for most of her rivals.

To compound matters, Tapestry stumbled on leaving the stalls. Joseph O’Brien actually did well to stay in the saddle, fired, as he was, up on the filly’s head. However, not only did Tapestry lose valuable ground at the start, a crucial stage of the race when early positions are up for grabs, but her saddle slipped backwards. Joseph said afterwards that he was back around her tail, that he couldn’t really ride a race. Put all that into the mix, and the Galileo filly did remarkably well to get as close as she did. She stayed on well all the way to the line to get to within a neck of her stable companion. If she had had another half a furlong, she probably would have won. There was a neck back to the third filly Volume, and the three of them were nicely clear of the rest of the field.

Tapestry remains a potentially exciting filly. Out of Moyglare Stakes winner Rumplestiltskin, she was a high-class juvenile last year, she won the Group 2 Debutante Stakes and she was unlucky in the Moyglare, promoted, as she was, to second place in front of Kiyoshi and behind Rizeena.

She is obviously still held in the highest regard by Team Ballydoyle, who rarely get these things wrong. She was sent off as favourite for the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket, and she wasn’t at all suited by the sedate early pace in the Coronation Stakes. Even with those two defeats, it was significant that Joseph chose to ride her on Saturday, in front of the Ribblesdale winner Bracelet and the Irish Guineas winner Marvellous. There could still be a Group 1 prize in her, and she could be a filly for the Nassau Stakes or the Yorkshire Oaks.

19th July 2014