White Moonstone remained undefeated with determined neck victory over Together in the Meon Valley Stud Fillies’ Mile (Eng-I) at Ascot Sept. 25.
The win was the second on the card in a huge treble for Godolphin and trainer Saeed bin Suroor, who also captured the listed Deloitte Rosemary Handicap with Aspectoflove and the feature race on the card, the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (Eng-I) with Poet’s Voice. Jockey Frankie Dettori had his own banner day at Ascot, capturing four races on the card, including the two group Is.
Expectations were high for White Moonstone, who entered the Fillies’ Mile off of a five-length romp in the May Hill Stakes (Eng-II) at Doncaster two weeks ago. The main competition for White Moonstone appeared to be Theyskens' Theory, a daughter of Bernardini , who had been impressive in winning her prior two starts. Ballydoyle’s representative, the stakes-winning Galileo filly Together, was entered in the race as a substitute for her more highly-regarded stablemate, Misty For Me, who had not been training well.
White Moonstone broke alertly and was held back at the rear of the field along with Together, as outsider Fork Handles went to the front to set the early pace. Ryan Moore and Theyskens' Theory tracked the leader from second, with Traffic Sister running along in third.
The field of five remained closely bunched as the fillies rounded the turn and entered the home straight. Moore was hard at work aboard Theyskens’ Theory, and the filly responded to his urging by taking over the lead with two furlongs remaining.
Together, benefiting from another strong ride from Johnny Murtagh moved into second as she zeroed in on the leader. In the meantime, Dettori had swung White Moonstone into the clear on the outside and the pair began gobbling up ground as they charged down the center of the course.
Under relentless urging from Dettori, White Moonstone finally wrested the lead from a tiring Theyskens’ Theory with less than a furlong to run. She did just enough to hold off the late challenge of Together, who passed Theyskens’ Theory in the final stages to finish second.
Theyskens’ Theory held on for third, 1 1/4 lengths behind Together. Final time for the eight furlongs was 1:42.75 over the good to soft going.
The race, which was a part of the “Win and You’re In” series sponsored by the Breeders’ Cup, earned White Moonstone an automatic berth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. IIT) on Nov. 5. Dettori indicated after the race, however, that White Moonstone was finished for the year and would be sent to Dubai for the winter.
“That will be it for the year,” Dettori told reporters. “She is quite light-framed, and I don’t think she’ll take much more racing. We will have to wait and see for next year. All the options are open.”
“We’ve got today over, now we can dream,” he added.
White Moonstone was bred in Kentucky by Stonerside Stable. She is out of Desert Gold, a stakes-winning daughter of Seeking the Gold. Her second dam is Desert Stormette, a full sister to Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) winner, Desert Stormer.