Lumiere Gate-to-Wire in Cheveley Park Win

Connections of Shamardal filly are hopeful she can stay one mile.

Lumiere was quickest from the gate and held her command to win the Connolly's Red Mills Cheveley Park Stakes (Eng-I) for 2-year-old fillies in a stirring finish Sept. 26 at Newmarket.

Spurting two lengths clear of her closest pursuer before the halfway mark, Lumiere was challenged coming into the dip before knuckling down for the final climb to the finish line. Illuminate and favorite Besharah menaced through the final furlong, but Lumiere proved too strong and got the win by a half-length from Illuminate. Besharah, the 9-4 favorite, was denied second by head.

The race was billed as a showdown between Illuminate and Besharah, who were separated by just a nose when the former took the Duchess of Cambridge (Eng-II) in July at Newmarket. Making her first start since then, Illuminate had every chance in the final eighth but could not overtake Lumiere.

Lumiere also turned the tables on Besharah after finishing second, 2 1/4 lengths behind that rival the Lowther Stakes (Eng-II) Aug. 20 at York in just her second career start.

With William Buick riding for Mark Johnston, Lumiere covered six furlongs on good turf in 1:11.98, earning her second win from three career starts. The daughter of Shamardal won her debut by six lengths July 9 at Newmarket.

"We always thought there was no shortage of stamina, but we also know she's very fast and has a tremendous cruising speed," Johnston told Racing Post. "I'm very, very hopeful she can stay a mile."

With Saturday's victory, Lumiere becomes a candidate for next year's One Thousand Guineas (Eng-I) at Newmarket.

Lumiere is a Darley-bred who races in Sheikh Hamdan's colors. Out of the winning Tobougg mare Screen Star, her fourth dam is U.S. champion 2-year-old filly of 1984 Outstandingly, whom Darley bought for $1.15 million at the 1988 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November sale from Eaton-Williams, agent for owner/breeder Harbor View Farm.