Chris Waller’s star colt Brazen Beau was far from disgraced at England’s Royal Ascot over the weekend when narrowly beaten in the closing stages to run second behind American galloper Undrafted in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes 2015.
Waller’s three-year-old son of I Am Invincible was favourite in the markets to win the European Group 1, won by the great Black Caviar back in 2012, but was pipped at the post by 14-1 chance Undrafted.
Jumping from a wide gate 15 draw with one of Australia’s best hoops Craig Williams in the saddle, Brazen Beau was racing for the first time since his Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) success down the Flemington straight in mid-March.
That was the youngster’s second Group 1 victory following a Coolmore Stud Stakes win over his how age last November, but he wasn’t able to make it a hat trick during his international debut on the weekend despite looking the winner two furlongs out from the line.
Williams took Brazen Beau up front early where he led for nearly the entire race before getting done by a half-length in the final stages by the fast finishing Wesley Ward-trained undrafted, given a weaving ride by Frankie Dettori, with Astaire in third one and three-quarter lengths further back.
“He’s done us proud to say the least,” Waller told Channel 4 Racing after the narrow loss.
“Full credit to the winner who had a lovely run.
“We had to do it a bit tough out there but credit to Craig, he backed himself and it almost came off.
“It’s a privilege for us to be here, everyone has done everything they can for us in England.”
The other Aussie sprinter in the race was the Gai Waterhouse-trained Wandjina, the Australian Guineas winning Snitzel colt last seen running a close second to Dissident in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) in Sydney back in April, who ran sixth in the classic.
Williams, who had pre-race concerns about there being no pace in this year’s Diamond Jubilee, was also full of praise for the near winner.
“It was a worry there would not be too much speed early,” he said.
“Unfortunately a couple of times in the race, being on his own, he seemed to lose concentration so it would have been an advantage if he’d been able to race with another horse but that’s the way it was,
“At the 100 (furlong) I could see Frankie out of the corner of my eye and I knew if I could find a half a length I was going to hold him.
“He held his momentum but just didn’t have that little bit of a punch at the end of the race.
“He’s been so gallant and tough, under no circumstance did he lay down – it was true Aussie spirit!”
Brazen Beau will stand at Darley’s Northwood Park in Victoria as a stallion later this year but could stay on in England for one more run in the July Cup at Newmarket Racecourse on July 11 before his retirement to stud.
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