POST-race comments were published in the UK media for Qemah, Aljazzi and Usherette, the first three past the post in Wednesday’s Gr2 Duke Of Cambridge Stakes over 1600m at Royal Ascot. The fourth-placed mare, South Africa’s Smart Call, remained under the radar after her second cracking run in the UK, but those who know Sir Michael Stoute believe this is the way he prefers to go about his business – as quiet as possible, and letting his horses do the talking.
Lining up for the Duke of Cambridge, Smart Call looked alert and happy and she ran accordingly. She showed that she was approaching peak fitness when forced to set the clip with none other willing, and doing admirably so in the hands of Ryan Moore.
Smart Call smoothly dictated the race for a full 1400m and was then just beaten for finishing speed over the last 150m. She kept going well to hold a most promising fourth over a trip that was 400m short of her best.
We cannot read Sir Michael Stoute’s mind, but it makes sense that he’s had his experienced eye on bigger fish already before the Duke Of Cambridge and that he will be impressed with the way Smart Call is progressing in his care. He will be looking for a suitable feature over further, next.
Photo: Smart Call (yellow silks), excellent fourth in Gr2 Duke Of Cambridge.