Brilliant New Approach Romps in Champion
by Mary Schweitzer
Date Posted: 10/18/2008 6:27:42 PM
Last Updated: 10/19/2008 8:20:59 PM
New Approach dominates the Emirates Airline Champion Stakes in his final start.
New Approach topped off a glittering career with a dominating six-length victory in the Emirates Airline Champion Stakes (Eng-I) at Newmarket Oct. 18. The Jim Bolger trainee became the first horse since Sir Ivor in 1968 to capture both the Vodafone Derby (Eng-I) and the Champion Stakes in the same year.
The Champion Stakes marked the final start for New Approach, who retires with eight wins from 11 career starts. The 3-year-old chestnut son of Galileo has never finished out of the money, and has career earnings totaling $3,900,467.
New Approach, who in the past has been a bit of a handful before his races, was every bit a gentleman today, cantering to the starting gate calmly under regular rider, Kevin Manning. Breaking alertly, Manning settled New Approach into third behind stablemate Upton Grey and Full of Gold.
Upton Grey continued to set a good pace as New Approach glided into second with just over a mile to run. New Approach took over the lead from Upton Grey with three furlongs to go, and began to pull away from the rest of the field.
Under a hand ride from Manning, New Approach crossed the wire six lengths in front. Henry Cecil’s Twice Over made a late run to take second, 1 1/2-lengths in front of Linngari.
Final time for the ten furlongs over the good turf was 2:00.13, bettering the course record of 2:01.04 set by Palace Music in 1984.
Bolger was full of praise for his 3-year-old star, telling reporters afterwards, “He was in super form coming up to this week, and I couldn’t have been happier with him.”
“He has been improving and was the complete package today,” he continued. “This was the best I have had him all season. This is the finest horse beyond a mile that I have trained, and he is a true champion.”
New Approach is out of the Ahonoora mare, Park Express, who was a champion in England and Ireland. He was bred in Ireland by Lodge Park Stud and is owned by Princess Haya of Jordan.
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