King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes 2014: Taghrooda proves she is very special

Filly could now be given the chance to define herself as a rarer breed still by heading on to the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe

ascot

For her trainer John Gosden it was "something a bit special" as Taghrooda became the first three-year-old filly to claim the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes in almost four decades.

It had shaped up as a tight contest, but the Oaks winner delivered a performance of such authority under Paul Hanagan that the connections of Telescope, three lengths second, and third-placed Mukhadram, the Eclipse winner, were happy with their lot. The weight-for-age scale meant that both of them were carrying over a stone more than Taghrooda.

Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum's instinct was proved right when he decided late on to pitch Taghrooda against males and older rivals and decline the safer option of the Irish Oaks. Now she could be given the chance to define herself as a rarer breed still by heading on to the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

Taghrooda, unbeaten in four starts, was a 7-2 chance against the 5-2 favourite Telescope, who had been impressive in the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot and was representing Sir Michael Stoute, the King George past-master.

Paul Hanagan, Sheikh Hamdan's retained jockey, has usually ridden Mukhadram positively from the front, but was happy to leave the job on the five-year-old to Dane O'Neill, who took himself past the pacemaker Leitir Mor.

Mukhadram made his habitual bold break around the home bend but this was over a longer distance than the Eclipse, and Telescope was also sent about his business by Ryan Moore.

For a moment, it appeared that Taghrooda would be settling for an honourable third, but she careered past Telescope in the final furlong and matched the feat of only two other Classic generation fillies in Dahlia (1973) and Pawneese (1976).

"It was a special performance and I'm very glad Sheikh Hamdan made the correct decision," Gosden said, suggesting that the sheikh would place all of his horses now. "She's right up there and would have to be the best filly I've had over a mile and a half. The Fugue would have beaten anything over a mile and a quarter and Royal Heroine was the best at a mile. I thought he [Hanagan] rode a beautiful race."

Hanagan said: "I actually heard the roar as I headed up the straight – I'd never heard a crowd react like that before."

Taghrooda is a daughter of the marvellous Sea The Stars, and is only 3-1 with Ladbrokes to emulate her sire at Longchamp in October.

Gosden said: "It would make some sense, but it's entirely up to the owner. She's still a three-year-old filly and there's a decent weight allowance. Races like the Yorkshire Oaks and the Arc – that's probably a nice pattern for her."

Of Telescope, Harry Herbert, Highclere Thoroughbred Racing's representative, said: "It's obviously disappointing not to win, but if I said that I was standing here having finished second in the King George and it was all depressing, I'd be lying. It was a joy to watch a filly as good as that."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Accountant

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Summarises financial status by ...

Ashdown Group: HR, Payroll & Benefits Officer - Altrincham - up to £24,000.

£18000 - £24000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: HR, Payroll & Benefits Of...

Recruitment Genius: Salesforce Developer

£50000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to continued business growt...

Recruitment Genius: Internal Sales Executive

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss