Godolphin's Farhh Overpowers Lockinge Rivals
Overshadowed last year, Godolphin's Farhh showed off his class in his 2013 debut with a dazzling breakout performance at the group I level May 18 in the JLT Lockinge Stakes (Eng-I) at Newbury.
Runner-up four times in group I races in 2012, including twice to the mighty Frankel, Farhh was a force to reckon with against 11 opponents in the Lockinge. He romped to a four-length triumph from 80-1 longshot Sovereign Debt while 5-4 favorite Declaration of War faded after a brief challenge to finished fifth.
Farhh was keen to run while tracking Penitnent and Reply from third early. The 5-year-old Pivotal horse willingly unleashed his winning move over a furlong out as longtime leader Reply faded.
Shaking free when Silvestre De Sousa gave the cue, Farhh covered one mile in 1:35.43 for his fourth win, and first in a stakes, from nine career starts for trainer Saeed bin Suroor.
"I am very pleased for Farhh; he has been running some good races and knocking on the door, so he definitely deserved to get his head in front in a group I," said De Sousa, who enjoyed his first British group I win.
"He was brilliant. He traveled so sweetly but felt a bit lonely when he got to the front and I just had to give him a tap and get him going. He will come on for the run."
Sovereign Debt outfinished Aljamaaher by neck for second.
Farhh was second best four times last year, all at the top level. Six lengths behind Frankel in the 2012 QIPCO Sussex Stakes Aug. 1 at Sandown, he finished seven lengths behind him in the Juddmonte International August 22 at York. Farhh bookended those races when a half-length behind Nathaniel in the Coral Eclipse Stakes July 7 at Sandown and a head to Moonlight Cloud in the Qatar Prix du Moulin de Longchamp Sept. 16 to cap his 2012 season.
Sent off in his season bow at 3-1 odds, he would not be a bridesmaid again.
Bin Suroor was delighted with the Lockinge victory with Farhh, who has had some persistent physical problems as well as surgery to remove an ankle chip.
"He has been improving with every piece of work and it's been a case of so far, so good with him," bin Suroor said. "We can look ahead to Royal Ascot and the rest of the season with him now."
Farhh provided Godolphin a fifth victory in the Lockinge, following Cape Cross (1998), Fly to the Stars (1999), Aljabr (2000), and Creachadoir (2008).
He was bred in Great Britain out of the German multiple group I winner Gonbarda, by Lando. Gonbardo is a half sister to German multiple group winner Gonlargo and English group III winner Gonfilia and a full sister to German stakes winner Gorlor, who was group III-placed.
Farrh is among a remarkable 110 stakes winners for sire Pivotal, who stands at Cheveley Park Stud in Newmarket.
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