Carla’s Way Wins Rockfel Stakes in Style

September 29, 2023

Classy daughter of Starspangledbanner (AUS) earns Win and You’re In spot for $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf

Jim Gluckson/Breeders’ Cup

NEWMARKET, England ― The Simon & Ed Crisford-trained Carla’s Way (IRE) took the step up in class in stride to win Friday’s Al Basti Equiworld, Dubai Rockfel Stakes (G2) at Newmarket in emphatic style. With her victory in the 7-furlong showpiece for 2-year-old fillies, Carla’s Way earned an automatic starting position into the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In.

The Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series is an international series of 80 Graded/Group stakes races whose winners receive automatic starting positions and fees paid into a corresponding race of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, scheduled to be held Nov. 3-4 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California.

Shaikh Duaij Al Khalifa-owned Carla’s Way took cover from the John & Thady Gosden-trained Spiritual (IRE),who led thefield and set a strong pace with a gap to Charlie Johnston’s Carolina Reaper (GB) in third ahead of Aidan O’Brien’s Ylang Ylang (GB).The unbeaten and 13-8 favorite Shuwari (IRE) brought up the rear.

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Carla’s Way, a striking daughter of Starspangledbanner (AUS) who ran credibly to finish second in the 7-furlong William Hill Prestige Fillies Stakes (G3) at Goodwood on soft ground last time out, made her move two furlongs out and effortlessly took the lead when approaching the final furlong.

Carla’s Way cruised in front to win by 2 1/4 lengths, with the Ollie Sangster-trained Shuwari closing on the outside to finish second. Ylang Ylangfinished 2 1/2 lengths back in third, with Spiritual fourth.

Under James Doyle, Carla’s Way completed the distance in 1:23.01 over a course listed as good to firm.

Simon Crisford said: “She did it really well. I think the fractions early on were pretty strong, so all credit to her to pick up and finish off well.

“I think she was slightly running on empty the last 100 yards and I think that’s probably as far as she wants to go trip-wise. I think the Fillies’ Mile back here in two weeks might just be stretching her stamina too much, but this is a Win and You’re In race, so obviously we’ll talk to Shaikh Duaij and ask what he would like to do. But I imagine it will be to go to California or for her not to run again at all this year.”

Doyle said: “When she’s good, she’s good, but when she lights up, she’s very racy and reactive. The guys at home have done a super job just trying to get her to relax.

“I sat on her last week, and her work was pretty impressive. We thought, if everything went to plan, it would take a good one to beat her.

“It’s panned out lovely and she did what we expected her to do. We’ll have a lot of fun with her next year. Her owner Shaikh Duaij is a very patient man and it’s nice to ride a winner for him in these colors.”

As part of the benefits of the Challenge Series, Breeders’ Cup will pay the entry fees for Carla’s Way to start in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita, which will be run at 1 mile. Breeders’ Cup will also provide a travel allowance for all starters based outside of North America to compete in the World Championships.

@PastTheWire bingo!!! 9/2 easy winner!!!

Rick St. Pierre @rstp354 View testimonials