Doyle gets it right in Moyglare as Spencer has day to forget
Rizeena ridden by James Doyle wins the Moyglare Stud Stakes. Photograph: Inpho/Lorraine O’Sullivan
James Doyle’s status as jockey of the moment received a Group One imprimatur at the Curragh yesterday when the young English man guided Rizeena to a dramatic success in the Moyglare Stud Stakes.
But this renewal is one Jamie Spencer probably won’t look back on with any fondness.
Seemingly convinced that Aidan O’Brien’s first-string Tapestry was the one to beat, Spencer launched a withering early run on Kiyoshi at the two-furlong marker that bumped Tapestry behind her two stable-companions, but also left the 13-8 favourite something of a target for Rizeena who pounced inside the final 100 yards.
Moreover, Kiyoshi was demoted from second to third, behind Tapestry, in a subsequent stewards inquiry which hit Spencer with a four-day careless riding ban.
“It’s been a good week, the most remarkable week of my life, and this is the icing on the cake,” grinned Doyle, who was landing his second Curragh Group One of the season after Al Kazeem in May’s Tattersalls Gold Cup.
Doyle’s confidence was evident in the win as Rizeena exploited an apparent concentration by the two market leaders on each other which looked to backfire on Kiyoshi, while Joseph O’Brien couldn’t find a clear passage for Tapestry.
Bookmaker reaction appeared to reflect the less than straightforward nature of Ireland’s premier race for juvenile fillies. Rizeena was installed as favourite for next year’s 1,000 Guineas by one firm while another made her two rivals 8 to 1 joint favourites for the classic and the Moyglare winner a 10 to 1 shot.
Not that any of it mattered to trainer Clive Brittain who took encouragement from Rizeena’s Prix Morny third against colts last month and didn’t share the popular view that this highlight was an effective match.
“She got taken out at the start at Deauville and she’s a filly that needs to get into a rhythm. I wouldn’t take anything away from the winner (No Nay Never) but I’ll take him on again any day of the week. I couldn’t believe she was 7 to 1 today,” said the popular veteran trainer who previously won the Moyglare with Sayyedati in 1992.
“I’ve trained some wonderful fillies like Sayyedati, User Friendly and Pebbles, and I think this one may not be too far behind them,” he added.
Apart from the big race, it was very much business as usual for Ballydoyle, with classic hope Great White Eagle graduating to Group Three level in the Round Tower Stakes.
Say did the same in the Dance Design Stakes. And Aidan O’Brien also unveiled another classic hope when Dazzling made all for a winning debut in the fillies maiden. He completed a four-timer with Victory Song in the finale.
Joanna Morgan won the Cambridgeshire twice as a jockey and trained stable pet Moran Gra to a 12-1 success in the big €100,000 handicap.