Bethrah claims Guineas for Weld

Dermot Weld’s Bethrah (16-1) got up in the dying strides to prevail in a blanket finish for the Etihad Airways Irish 1000 Guineas at the Curragh.

Dermot Weld’s Bethrah (16-1) got up in the dying strides to prevail in a blanket finish for the Etihad Airways Irish 1000 Guineas at the Curragh.

Owned by Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, the Marju filly hit overdrive inside the final furlong for Pat Smullen and sneaked up a tiny gap on the rail.

Godolphin’s Anna Salai looked to be going best with two furlongs to run but was narrowly denied by a head in second, with Mick Channon’s Music Show, the 3-1 favourite, in third.

Full Of Hope, one of the Ballydoyle battalion, took the field along with the likes of Lady Darshaan, Gile Na Greine and Anna Salai in close attendance.

However, Jim Bolger Gile Na Greine dropped away at the three pole while the likes of Termagant, Lolly for Dolly and Lady Springbank were never involved.

Anna Salai took it up under Ahmed Ajtebi over a furlong out but is was Aidan O’Brien’s Remember When who briefly flattered.

She never quite got there and ended up fourth, with stablemate Lillie Langtry just behind.

Weld’s filly was giving the master of Rosewell House his fourth Irish 1000 Guineas after Prince’s Polly (1982), Trusted Partner (1988) and Nightime (2006).

Weld said: "You can never be confident but I knew she would represent us very well. She is tough and very genuine and has progressed over the winter. We’ve done a lot of work with her at the stalls and she is a lot more confident these days and went in perfectly today.

“She’s a very progressive filly and has battled her way forward.

“I need to talk to Angus Gold (racing manager) and the Sheikh himself and we’ll make a plan from there, but she might go 10 furlongs next as I don’t see her just limited to a mile.

“That’s the fourth time I’ve won the 1000 Guineas so I’m very pleased.”

Smullen added: “I’m not surprised she has won and I’ve always thought she was a very good filly. She progressed from her first run of the season to Leopardstown and she progressed again after that.

“I didn’t know if she would win, but I thought she would put up a very good performance. She got me out of trouble and with 19 runners there was not a whole lot of room, it was a fair performance and she’s always shown talent.

“The plan will be up to the boss, but I think the logical thing will be to go for the Coronation at Ascot.”

Godolphin’s racing manager Simon Crisford said of the runner-up: “She’s run a super race and we are very pleased, she’s handled the ground well enough.

“She’s well entered in all of the mile fillies’ race and she should stay further too. We’ll look at either the Coronation or the Prix de Diane.”

Channon is still seeking an elusive Classic success and said of Music Show: “There are no excuses, she’s had a good run through but they just got away from her up the rail.

“We’ve turned the form around with the English Guineas third (Gile Na Greine) and that race was just a mess. I’d say the winner is probably a very good filly and has quickened up well.

“Of course I wanted to win and I’ll keep trying to win a big race but there is no divine right.”

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