SEA OF Class lived up to her name to land the Darley Yorkshire Oaks in scintillating style – and provide Skipton-born trainer William Haggas with the perfect 58th birthday present.
Already a winner of the Irish Oaks, connections will consider supplementing the filly into the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe after she streaked clear of her rivals to land this group One.
It provided jockey James Doyle with big race consolation after he endured a luckless passage on the favourite Poet’s Word in the Juddmonte International the previous day.
“You always hope they are going to do something like that, but she really was impressive,” eulogised Haggas. “He (Doyle) was coming a bit early but when he said ‘go’, she really picked up. She’s got a great turn of foot and she’s a strong traveller.
“She’s not in the Arc yet and I stress it is a ‘yet’. There is a lot of water to pass under the bridge. She’s not been the easiest (to train). She’s a bit of a tail swisher, but she stands as still as a rock to be saddled and is as cool as a cucumber. She’s a very good filly and we’ve a lot to look forward to.”
Meanwhile, Laurens could be dropped back in trip after Karl Burke’s stable star was unplaced under jockey PJ McDonald.
She’s not been the easiest (to train). She’s a bit of a tail swisher, but she stands as still as a rock to be saddled and is as cool as a cucumber. She’s a very good filly and we’ve a lot to look forward to.Trainer William Haggas on Sea of Class
Though the muddling early pace did not help the triple Group One winner to settle, Leyburn-based Burke believes the horse’s stamina was exposed.
He’s now contemplating dropping Laurens back to a mile for a mouthwatering clash in Ireland’s Matron Stakes with Jessica Harrington’s all-conquering Alpha Centauri.
“She just didn’t stay. PJ said three furlongs out he wouldn’t have swapped her for anything, but in the end she didn’t get past the leader,” said Burke. “We’ll go home and regroup, but there’s a chance we could go and take on Mrs Harrington’s filly in the Matron over a mile.”