Racing: Brittain stands alone as Fantasy frightens away fillies

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The Independent Online
THE PERILS of horse-race sponsorship were embarassingly illustrated yesterday when only four fillies - one by way of a late entry - were declared for the Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket on Wednesday. Fortunately for the race's backers, Tattersalls, two of the four are Sayyedati and Lyric Fantasy, the best of their generation, writes Paul Hayward.

Once more the expansionist policies of Sayyedati's trainer, Clive Brittain, have been vindicated because he is assured of two of the four prize-money payouts in what is regarded as the two-year-old fillies' championship. Brittain has also entered Anonymous (Poker Chip is the fourth), though Michael Roberts's allegiance to Lyric Fantasy may force a change of jockey for Sayyedati. Walter Swinburn is awaiting the call.

Another talented recruit bound for Newmarket is Inchinor, who sank the favourite, Emperor Jones, in a graduation race at Ascot yesterday. 'I'd think the Dewhurst (Stakes) will be next. We'll take on the little man with the big horse,' Inchinor's trainer, Roger Charlton, said in a reference, respectively, to Andre Fabre and Zafonic, the new rave horse.

Charlton is barely among the top 20 trainers this season but has a strike-rate of 30 per cent and ought to be on the shortlist of anybody crazed enough to put a Flat racer into training. Despite winning two Derbys for Khalid Abdullah in his first season, Charlton is some way behind both Fabre and Henry Cecil when it comes to the dishing out of Abdullah's latest produce. Strange.

Emperor Jones is not one for the reputation dump. 'He's still immature, still weak, and I make no excuses except to say that the ground (soft) was wrong for him,' John Gosden, his trainer, said. 'On decent ground we would have had a tussle with the winner.'

Breeding suggested, even before she had run, that Thawakib would be a force on the 1993 Classic circuit, and those predictions look doubly valid after her win from the equally promising Criquette in the Kensington Palace Stakes. The pair drew seven lengths clear in a good time and look high-class staying fillies in the moulding.

Keep them in mind.