Superstars of Flat year take final bow

Owner hints that top miler Goldikova will stay in training after champion's award

The return of Kauto Star at Haydock on Saturday permits no doubt that the jumpers now command centre stage, but it none the less remains necessary to restore the spotlight to the Flat for one or two final bows.

Not that the 19th Cartier Awards, presented in Mayfair on Tuesday evening, were merely a retrospective on one of the great seasons in Turf history – for all that Sea The Stars himself has been retired. In collecting the trophy for Champion Older Horse, Gerard Wertheimer strongly hinted that Goldikova (who would herself have been judged outstanding in any normal year) might well remain eligible for the same award in 2010.

Freddy Head, who trains Goldikova, could not explicitly confirm that she would be trained for an unprecedented third success at the Breeders' Cup. "But it is looking more likely that she will stay in training," he admitted.

Head's sister, Criquette, was also on hand to celebrate recognition for Special Duty as Champion Juvenile Filly. Lord Grimthorpe, racing manager to her owner Khaled Abdulla, noted that this filly reflects not only the cosmopolitan composition of Juddmonte Farms – having been bred in Kentucky, foaled in England, broken in Ireland, and trained in France – but also its debt to Bobby Frankel, who died on Monday. Among the many horses Frankel trained for Juddmonte was Quest To Peak, the dam of Special Duty. "Someone asked me who would replace Frankel," Grimthorpe said later. "And the answer was nobody, because a man like that is irreplaceable."

Sariska and Fleeting Spirit were two other female Award winners, respectively for Three-Year-Old Filly and Champion Sprinter, who will be seen again in 2010. Yeats, Champion Stayer for the fourth year running, is finally off to stud, but the future is clearly bright for Coolmore's other winner, the Champion Juvenile, St Nicholas Abbey.

And while Sea The Stars himself has gone, he has already performed a considerable service by prompting Coolmore to persevere next year with Rip Van Winkle and Fame And Glory, both of whom would almost certainly have achieved enough at three, but for his intervention, to pursue a career at stud.

Sea The Stars was duly recognised as Horse Of The Year, and of course Champion Three-Year-Old Colt, and so drew a touching tribute from his young owner, Christopher Tsui, to the "very special ladies" who made the adventure possible – his mother, Ling, and the colt's dam, Urban Sea, herself an Arc winner for the Tsui family. Urban Sea, who died earlier this year, has already produced one champion in Galileo.

"My mother took her to Ireland looking for the best stallions in Europe," Tsui remembered. "She went there by herself with one mare, not knowing anybody. [Told] that Urban Sea didn't have the pedigree or the looks to be a champion, my mother always replied the same way – that Urban Sea was beautiful, and would create her own pedigree. Urban Sea did more than that. She leaves behind a great legacy. Sea The Stars was born out of my mother's love and belief in her. I believe he was on a mission to honour his mother. Winning the Arc completed a circle that started 16 years ago."

But the biggest ovation of the night was reserved for John Oxx, trainer of Sea The Stars. Though aghast to receive a surprise Award of Merit, his response proved equally in character, wry and humble. The fact is that the supervision of Oxx made Sea The Stars immune to the petty resentments so common in racing. In the testimony of Michael Kinane, the rider of Sea The Stars: "To question his ability as a trainer would be like questioning Shakespeare for words." Johnny Murtagh, the Ballydoyle stable jockey, remembered his own debt to Oxx. "He's a gentleman," he said. "And when he gets those top horses, he never misses."

Not that every leave-taking on the Flat is proving so decorous. It emerged yesterday that Peter Chapple-Hyam, not for the first time, has somehow contrived to provoke one of his most precious patrons. Lawrie Inman, the young lion of the City whose investment had offered fresh impetus to Chapple-Hyam's stop-start career, told the Racing Post that he is moving three colts from the yard, leaving only a yearling filly. Monitor Closely, the St Leger third, and Coordinated Cut, rated a potential Derby colt, are joining Michael Bell. Chapple-Hyam must be counted every bit as exasperating as he is talented, which is saying a great deal.

Turf account: Chris McGrath


Leaving Alone (4.30 Kempton) Unfancied for her Salisbury debut and was soon behind, only to finish strongly on to the heels of the placed horses. The third went on to win at Newmarket and this nicely bred filly should prove sharper.

Next best

Fantastic Cuix (4.0 Kempton) This filly has a super pedigree and finished strongly into midfield in a big field at Doncaster first time out. She hit her head on the gate that day, and looks sure to improve considerably.

One to watch

Though only fourth in the end, the unexposed James De Vassy (Nick Williams) had them all stretched on the turn in a hot handicap hurdle at Cheltenham on Sunday and was only run down on the final climb.

Where the money's going

Zaynar, the Triumph Hurdle winner, is 2-1 from 9-4 with the sponsors for Saturday's Coral Ascot Hurdle.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
The Queen and the letter sent to Charlie
Arts and Entertainment
Eurovision Song Contest 2015
EurovisionGoogle marks the 2015 show
Two lesbians hold hands at a gay pride parade.
peopleIrish journalist shares moving story on day of referendum
Arts and Entertainment
<b>Kathryn Williams</b>
When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
He was being courted by the same record company who had signed me and subsequently let me go, and I wanted him to know that there were people around who didn't want anything from him. At the Shepherds Bush Empire in London, on the last night of the tour, Ray stopped in his set to thank me for doing the support. He said I was a really good songwriter and people should buy my stuff. I was taken aback and felt emotionally overwhelmed. Later that year, just before I had my boy Louis, I was l asleep in bed with Radio 4 on when Louis moved around in my belly and woke me up. Ray was doing a session on the World Service. </p>
I really believe that Louis recognised the music from the tour, and when I gave birth to him at home I played Ray's record as something that he would recognise to come into the world with. </p>
booksKathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
Liz Kendall played a key role in the introduction of the smoking ban
newsLiz Kendall: profile
Life and Style
techPatent specifies 'anthropomorphic device' to control media devices
The PM proposed 'commonsense restrictions' on migrant benefits
voicesAndrew Grice: Prime Minister can talk 'one nation Conservatism' but putting it into action will be tougher
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

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?