In a devastating performance that left her trainer Mark Kavanagh momentarily speechless and her jockey Michael Rodd making comparisons to the mighty Black Caviar, odds-on favourite Atlantic Jewel annihilated her rivals to win the Thousand Guineas 2011 at Caulfield this afternoon with a possible Cox Platebid pending.
Saluting for the Luxbet punters, Fastnet Rock filly Atlantic Jewel became the sixth Thousand Guineas winner in the past nine years to take out the spring carnival classic.
Drifting out from $1.50 to $1.65 at Luxbet just before the $500,000 Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) jumped, Atlantic Jewel proved she was far too good for her fellow fillies, maintaining her flawless record that now stands at four wins from as many starts.
Only getting away reasonably from her barrier four draw, Atlantic Jewel got a bump on the inside very early on in the running, Rodd forced to settle her around two to three lengths further back than probably intended.
In the end it hardly mattered, however, Atlantic Jewel’s class and blistering turn of foot more than making up for the ground lost early.
First away from the Thousand Guineas barriers was Peter Moody’s Cute Emily who set a fast pace, while Rodd peeled Atlantic Jewel out wide on the outside to give her the chance to settle.
“I wanted to be wide,” Rodd said after the race.
“The pace was on and it was very solid.”
At the 600 metres Cute Emily still held the lead, but the favourite was ready to pounce and begun to creep up to sit fourth by the turn for home.
Hitting the lead with 300 metres left to travel, Atlantic Jewel showed exactly why she was the odds-on favourite.
Tucking on the back of a well-travelling Mosheen, the two top elects fought it out stride for stride momentarily before Atlantic Jewel hit the turbo and quickly left her only challenger behind.
“You’ve got to ride these sorts of horses arrogantly,” Rodd said.
“I just let her slide up and I was able to track Mosheen up…she just pulled right away from her.”
Opening up for a painless and outstanding win, Atlantic Jewel won running away three lengths ahead of the Robert Smerdon-trained Mosheen ($4.80) while Sharnee Rose ($21) finished off the Thousand Guineas 2011 Trifecta a further two and a quarter lengths away third.
Moody’s Hallowell Belle managed fourth while their stablemate and pacesetter Cute Emily faded to finish 10th beating home just one other runner.
Winning in a time of 1:35.86, Atlantic Jewel’s sectional times were sensational and showed just a glimpse of her long-term potential as a superstar.
“She’s just freakish,” Rodd said.
“Obviously you’ve got to take your hat off to Kav and the stable getting her to peak at just the right time.”
Kavanagh was also blown away by what he saw from his Thousand Guineas winner.
“These don’t come along very often,” Kavanagh said after the race.
“She can do many things that I haven’t seen horses do before.
“For her to be able to dominate like that she’s a very, very good horse.”
There have been rumours circulating around the tracks this week that connections would pay the $130,000 late entry fee to get Atlantic Jewel into Saturday week’s $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley should she have won the Thousand Guineas.
Her overwhelming win today would certainly suggest Atlantic Jewel could be competitive under weight-for-age conditions in the Cox Plate 2011, but Kavanagh said his recommendation would be to send her to the paddock ahead of next season.
“We’ll wait and see and I’ll discuss it with the owners to see where we go,” he said.
“She’s a good filly, but we don’t want to gut her.
“I’ll recommend she goes to the paddock, she’s something else and I think we should probably give her a chance to get there.”
Kavanagh, however, may have trouble convincing connections not to continue on this spring with Atlantic Jewel.
“I don’t know yet,” Coolmore’s Michael Kirwan said of a possible Cox Plate run with Atlantic Jewel.
“She’s special and I’m sure everything will be discussed.”
See below for the complete 2011 Thousand Guineas results and finishing order and stay tuned to Races.com.au for the news on whether Atlantic Jewel is given a Cox Plate target.
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2011Thousand Guineas Finishing Order & Results
|1st||8||ATLANTIC JEWEL(4)||Michael Rodd||Mark Kavanagh||55.5||1-35.86|
|2nd||1||MOSHEEN(9)||Danny Nikolic||Robert Smerdon||55.5||3.0L|
|3rd||11||SHARNEE ROSE(5)||Dwayne Dunn||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||55.5||5.3L|
|4th||2||HALLOWELL BELLE(8)||Luke Nolen||Peter G Moody||55.5||6.3L|
|5th||12||RAHVEEL(3)||Damien Oliver||Leon Corstens||55.5||7.0L|
|6th||5||DISPUTES(10)||Kerrin McEvoy||Peter Snowden||55.5||7.1L|
|7th||9||KNEELING(6)||Craig Williams||John P Thompson||55.5||7.3L|
|8th||6||CELEBRITY GIRL(2)||Corey Brown||Mark Kavanagh||55.5||8.8L|
|9th||3||BLISS STREET(7)||Steven Arnold||Daniel Morton||55.5||9.2L|
|10th||4||CUTE EMILY(1)||Craig Newitt||Peter G Moody||55.5||9.5L|
|11th||10||CRUCIAL(11)||Steven King||Anthony Freedman||55.5||11.5L|
|Src||7||MANHATTAN MAID||Michelle Payne||Darren Weir|
Caulfield Race 6 – 12/10/2011