Sunday, August 23, 2020

Reflections on Love


I do love a good filly - they seem to be more consistent and predictable than their flighty brothers. The first great one I remember was Sweet Solera trained by the relatively obscure Reg Day who won the Oaks and the 1,000 Guineas in 1961 and promptly retired to stud. She was followed by the peerless Noblesse who won the Oaks by a Shergar-like 10 lengths for Paddy Pendergast in 1963 with Garnie Bougoure on board. In recent years we have enjoyed Enable’s feats - she is arguably one of the all-time greats. My affection for her was initially inspired by her Oaks win 2017 - I had backed her at 8-1, the last time she was a decent price. Having swept all before her for the past few years however she suddenly has a serious challenger. Love has won both the 1,000 Guineas and the Oaks easily this year and she confirmed her class by effortlessly dismissing a decent field in the Yorkshire Oaks last week. She will clash with Enable in the Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp on the 4th October and that is a mouth-watering prospect. Enable will have to concede 7 pounds to the younger horse and she is pushing on a bit so I strongly suspect that Love will conquer all in Paris. (I’ve been listening too many bad puns on the ITV racing programme not to be infected.) The current odds of 3-1 seem generous.