Sweet Stream Wins Park Hill Stakes; Melbourne Cup Next

Team Valor's Sweet Stream caught Kastoria late to post a 1 1/4-length victory in the Park Hill Stakes (Eng-II) at England's Doncaster Racecourse.

Kastoria, who had assumed the lead at the top of the straight, finished two lengths in front of Songerie.

Ridden by Thierry Gillet for trainer John Hammond, the Italian-bred winner carried 129 pounds as she posted her seventh win in 17 career starts and improved her earnings to 585,220. The 5-year-old daughter of Shantou, based in France, won the Prix Vermeile Fouquet Barriere (Fr-I) last year and previously this year was victorious in the Prix Gontaut-Biron (Fr-III). He other stakes triumph came in the 2003 Prix Belle de Nuit.

The Park Hill was the final tuneup for Sweet Stream before being sent to Australia for the Melbourne Cup (Aus-I). Sweet Stream is the second high-weighted filly or mare in the Cup, behind only Makybe Diva, winner of the last two runnings of the Australian classic that is run at two miles.

Sweet Stream was purchased by Team Valor as a 2-year-old after winning in Italy, but plans to import her to the U.S. never materialized after she tested positive for piroplasmosis and was unable to come to this country.