Nayarra took command with just over a furlong to run and easily held off the late challenge of Rosa Eglanteria to win the $397,151 Premio Gran Criterium (It-I) at San Siro Oct. 9.
The 2-year-old daughter of Cape Cross was one of two fillies--along with the runner-up--in the field of seven juveniles that faced the starter. Although she had yet to shed her maiden tag going into the Gran Criterium, Nayarra was still the most experienced runner in the field. The Mick Channon trainee had made eight starts prior to the San Siro race, finishing in the money six times.
At the start it was longshot Lo Zoccolo Duro who shot to the front under jockey Umberto Rispoli to set the pace. The bay colt quickly opened up several lengths on the rest of the field, who were quite content to let him go. Nayarra was forwardly placed by Martin Dwyer, who had the filly settled into second. Rosa Eglanteria sat just behind her in third, with Vola E Va in fourth.
Lo Zoccolo Duro, who at one point opened up a 15-length lead, began to run out of gas as the field hit the two furlong marker. Nayarra and the rest of the field began to reel in the longtime leader, with Nayarra taking command of the race with a furlong to run.
Within the final furlong it was all Nayarra, as she easily held off the late bid of Rosa Eglanteria to win by a half-length. Vedelago closed late to finish third, a neck further back.
Final time for the eight furlongs was 1:35.70 over a course listed as good.
Channon, who trains the filly for owner Prince Faisal, told reporters after the race, “She’s had her critics all year but I am delighted with her. I doubt she will run again this year but will have to speak with Prince Faisal.”
Nayarra was bred in Ireland by Nawara Stud Co. She is out of Massarra, a stakes-winning daughter of Danehill who is a half sister to champion and leading sire Invincible Spirit.