Mail the Desert Captures Moyglare Stud at Curragh

Mail the Desert provided jockey Steve Drowne with his first win in Ireland when coming out best in a blanket finish to the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes for 2-year-old fillies on Sunday.

Less than one and a half lengths covered the first five home in the seven-furlong Curragh event, with Mick Channon-trained Mail The Desert, an 8-1 shot, becoming the first British-trained winner of a race since Bianca Nera won for David Loder in 1996.

Channon, busy supervising matters at home, said on Sunday: "I'm delighted. Mail The Desert is in all the good races, including the Fillies' Mile at Ascot, and I've always thought she'll get the mile."

Mail The Desert held the Jim Bolger-trained Luminata by a head, with John Gosden's Pearl Dance a neck back in third place.

Channon told Racing Post that her win came as no great surprise.

"We keep turning up for these good races and all I said to the owner (John Livock, a long-time friend of the trainer and of Manchester City manager Kevin Keegan) was that wherever Pearl Dance finished we'd be either half a length in front of her or half a length behind her," he said.

"The two-year-old form over here (UK) is rock solid, and as well as having a fair bit of ability, Mail The Desert is tough and takes her races well."

The winner, who disputed the lead throughout with Pearl Dance, edged ahead over a furlong out and held the strong challenge of Luminata, who was backed at 6-1.

Drowne achieved the second Group 1 success of his career. He had gone close to achieving Irish Classic glory on Golden Silca, who finished second in the 1999 Irish 1,000 Guineas.

A daughter of Desert Prince, Mail The Desert, who cost 58,000 guineas as a yearling, was bred near The Curragh by Sean Coughlan, who also bred dual Derby winner High Chaparral.

Gosden said of Pearl Dance: "She's run a very nice race and I'm very happy that she is now Group 1-placed but I wasn't expecting her to be in front through the race. I was hoping she would come from off the pace."

Danaskaya, who had finished second to Russian Rhythm in the Lowther Stakes at York last month, finished half a length back in fourth place with her jockey Kevin Manning offering no excuses for the 5-2 favourite's defeat.