Show stars in Falmouth

MUSIC SHOW ended a wretched run of luck in Group One company as she put up a dazzling display in the Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket yesterday.

Mick Channon’s filly had circumstances conspire against her in both the English and Irish 1000 Guineas while she came from well off the pace to finish just out of the frame in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot.

But she finally bagged a deserved Group One victory as Richard Hughes produced the 13-2 chance to swoop up the hill and deny the gallant Spacious by two lengths.

Channon and owner Jaber Abdullah would rightly have been left bemused after the filly was drawn on the wrong side of the track at Newmarket, after which she finished to good effect at the Curragh and the Royal meeting, claiming third and fourth respectively.

Her clash with the older generation brought about a good pace which allowed Hughes to drop his filly out.

Spacious was set to be swamped heading into the final furlong but James Fanshawe’s five-year-old kept finding for Kieren Fallon and only Music Show could get on terms.

Jersey Stakes winner Rainfall was a three-quarter-length third with Coronation Stakes winner Lillie Langtry and dual Guineas heroine Special Duty well beaten in fifth and seventh respectively.

The Falmouth was Music Show’s fourth consecutive start in Group One company with only Favoletta and Al Bahathri taking in the same four Group Ones since 1970.

Channon said: “It is a relief when you know they are a Group One filly and it keeps going wrong, but it has gone right today and I am thrilled.

“She is the best three-year-old filly in the country and has beaten both the Coronation winner and the Guineas winner.

“I was angry after Ascot but I am not blaming anyone as the filly never had a run.

“It is frustrating more than anything but it is a good job I believe and most of the scribes wrote her off.

“She was caught out wide all the way in the Coronation but they went fast today, she got plenty of cover and it has worked out.

“It is annoying when you know they are good and it doesn’t work out.

“We’ll have a look at the Matron but we may consider the Prix Rothschild first and have a go at Goldikova as she is the top dog.

“She is in the Nassau but I would rather wait and go a mile and a quarter next year.”

Hughes added: “They were going a suicidal pace at halfway and I must have been about 12 lengths behind.

“They were walking by the time they got to the two-furlong pole and I was able to ease by them.”

Spacious had finished third in the race 12 months ago and excelled herself by forcing the issue all the way and taking second.

Special Duty had been awarded both the English and French 1000 Guineas in the stewards’ room but dropped away tamely on this occasion.

Her trainer Criquette Head-Maarek said: “She didn’t run her race. Maybe something will come out but I don’t know.

“She’s been working very well but she’s walking like a dead horse.”

Aidan O’Brien is still chasing his first Falmouth Stakes win and was perplexed by Lillie Langtry’s performance, saying: “I’m not really sure what happened. We’ll just have to wait and see. Johnny (Murtagh) said she just didn’t pick up but for what reason we’ll just have to see.”

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