Earlier this week Peter Chapple-Hyam expressed irritation over rumours that he was to be hired to salvage the Maktoums' listless juvenile operation, reserving particular ire for opportunist trainers who have apparently been approaching his existing patrons. The glossy performance of Dutch Art in the Shadwell Stud Middle Park Stakes here yesterday begged two obvious questions. If it is not true, then shouldn't the sheikhs make it so? And if they do, why on earth would he say yes?
For all the millions they spend at the yearling sales, Godolphin have forgotten what a Group One juvenile winner looks like. Yet Chapple-Hyam found Dutch Art for just 16,000 guineas, and has now supervised him through an unbeaten juvenile campaign.
The ground had deteriorated in heavy rain overnight, but this glistening chestnut colt had won the Prix Morny in similar conditions and flowed serenely clear entering the Dip. Frankie Dettori did not have to exert himself in the slightest for Dutch Art to beat Wi Dud two lengths.
Typically, Chapple-Hyam was pretending afterwards that it had all been pretty artless. "I bought him to be a sharp, early two-year-old that could be sold on," he said. "But he just kept growing and gets better and better." By the same token, he vows that the son of Medicean will progress again next season, when his priority will be the Stan James 2,000 Guineas - for which his odds were halved to 7-1 by the sponsors.
The last colt to step up from six furlongs here to win the Guineas was Rodrigo De Triano in 1991. He was one of the horses who detonated Chapple-Hyam's explosive emergence prior to a fruitless exile in Hong Kong.
The trainer's only regret here was that the colt could not be ridden by Alan Munro, still awaiting medical reports on the convulsion he suffered when flying out for the Morny. Munro has not been able to ride since, though Chapple-Hyam encouraged him by vowing he would be back on this colt in the Guineas.
Dutch Art's owners, Paul and Susan Roy, provide the lone British candidate for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe tomorrow in Sixties Icon, whose trainer, Jeremy Noseda, had hoped for a parallel tonic from Sander Camillo in the Skybet Cheveley Park Stakes.
But he had warned that she would not run on soft ground, and her defection cleared the way for Indian Ink to maintain her giddy progress with a defeat of Dhanyata. In the space of a week she has won cash and kudos, trousering £136,570 in a sales race at Ascot and then adding £96,526 here.
Those prizes are the wrong way round, of course, this being much the more competitive and prestigious race. But Richard Hannon did not care as he celebrated his first Cheveley Park in a long career of excellence with juveniles. "I was delighted to see the rain," the trainer said. "She got into trouble going into the Dip but when she hit the rising ground she ran on again. That's it for now. She has had five quick races, but you'll get a lot more filly next year. She is out of a Darshaan mare so we'll have to be looking at the 1,000 Guineas." Coral cut Indian Ink to 20-1, with Sander Camillo the 3-1 favourite.
Thousand Words, who surrendered his unbeaten record so tamely in the Champagne Stakes at York, bounced back in the Somerville Tattersalls Stakes and could return here for the Darley Dewhurst Stakes in a fortnight.Reuse content