Samitar is a Classic first for Harley and Channon

 

For once yesterday, the spotlight was off Aidan O'Brien, who had taken a record-equalling 27th Irish Classic on Saturday, and on to a young man winning his first of any stripe. Step forward last year's apprentice champion Martin Harley, victorious on the 12-1 chance Samitar in the 1,000 Guineas at the Curragh in a finish dominated by outsiders.

But though the filly's comfortable length-and-a-half defeat of the 33-1 shot Ishvana may have been surprising to onlookers, it was less so to those closest to her. As a juvenile, the daughter of Rock Of Gibraltar had failed by only a head to take a Group One prize and there were perfectly valid excuses for her two dullish previous efforts this term. And soon into the race, Harley knew it was her, and his, day.

"She came here on song today and was always travelling for me," he said. "Two furlongs down, I was never going to get beat and when I asked her she just picked up and ran. It was an amazing feeling."

The winning trainer, Mick Channon, typically, put it more succinctly: "At half way I turned and said 'she pisses it'. I knew if the real Samitar turned up she'd be right there, and she did and she was."

The runaway Newmarket Guineas heroine Homecoming Queen was 11-8 favourite yesterday to follow up her nine-length romp in the Rowley Mile mud three weeks earlier and take O'Brien past his namesake Vincent's Irish Classic total. She led until Samitar, relishing the fast ground, cruised past but dropped back to fourth.

It was left to Ishvana, the longest-priced of the O'Brien trio of runners, to try to salvage honour for her stable, but she was always second-best. Another long shot, Princess Sinead at 25-1, plugged on for third.

Samitar, the only British challenger in yesterday's field, gave Berkshire-based Channon his 17th top-level success, 10 of which have come with fillies. Perhaps surprisingly, it was a first Classic for him, too, though not at his first attempt. Again typically, he blamed himself for his charge's earlier defeats. "First time out I dropped her back to six furlongs for one of those valuable sales races," he said, "trying to be far too clever. Then in France it was all a bit of a mess; she should have been held up, not made the running."

Yesterday was the first time Harley had ridden Samitar, owned by US-based Martin Schwartz, in public. "Dead chuffed for the lad," added Channon. "He works hard and he had the confidence to grab his chance and get it spot on today."

Like Saturday's Irish 2,000 Guineas hero Power, Samitar is bound for Royal Ascot, he for the St James's Palace Stakes and she for the filly equivalent, the Coronation Stakes.

There was Group One consolation at the Curragh for O'Brien and jockey son Joseph with So You Think, who never had to come out of his comfort zone to take the Tattersalls Gold Cup by six lengths. The six-year-old, too, will be at next month's Royal meeting, with the Prince of Wales's Stakes his target.

At Longchamp, Cirrus Des Aigles, 4-7 for the Group One Prix d'Ispahan, was put in his place fair and square by the filly Golden Lilac, winner of last year's French Guineas and Oaks.

Turf Account

Chris McGrath's Nap: Cape Classic (7.10 Windsor)

Not ideally drawn, but is progressive – his half-brother King's Apostle developed into a high-class sprinter with age – and finished best of all on his comeback at Doncaster nine days ago.

Next best: Touch Gold (3.30 Leicester)

Makes his handicap debut; his homework indicates he has progressed since satisfactory seasonal debut on soft enough ground.

One to watch: Mac's Power (James Fanshawe) could finish only third after being hampered in his warm-up at Newmarket but, with his handicap mark in mind, that may prove a blessing come Wokingham day at Royal Ascot.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

Tradewind Recruitment: English Teacher

Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: This post arises as a result of the need to...

Tradewind Recruitment: Class Teacher Required ASAP In Uminster

£120 - £150 per annum: Tradewind Recruitment: I am recruiting on instruction o...

Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Director - London - £70,000

£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Wimbledon, SW London

£24000 - £28000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Wim...

Day In a Page

Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore