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2000 Guineas: Casamento in focus
by Geir Stabell / Globeform
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Newmarket Saturday:

Godolphin's ex-Irish runner Casamento would be an interesting player if allowed to take his chance against Frankel in the Quipco 2,000 Guineas (G1). A solid Group One winner at two, this colt is entitled to improve again at three.

Casamento was quick to make his presence felt at the top level. He almost got up to beat the more experienced Pathfork when staying on strongly in the Vincent O'Brien National Stakes (G1) over 7 furlongs at The Curragh in September.

He came to the prestigious 7-furlong event off just one run, having won his maiden at Tipparary in late August, and Casamento produced an unusually high rating for one with so little experience in the National. He went on to prove that it was no fluke, winning the Beresford Stakes (G2) by 4 lengths from Mawaakef on his next start, and moving up yet again to take the well-contested Racing Post Trophy (G1) at Doncaster in England in October.

Ridden by Frankie Dettori, Casamento was favourite for the one-mile Racing Post, and he obliged by length from Seville, who was 2 lengths in front of Master Of Hounds. All three represented Ireland, while Native Khan did best for the home team in fourth place, ahead of yet another smart Irish raider; Dunboyne Express. Casamento was ridden up with the pace and sent to the lead with over two furlongs to run. He responded well to prssure, and was a worthy winner. Having joined Godolphin's trainer Mahmoud Al Zarooni from Mike Halford, Casamento has been among the favourites in the Derby betting this winter. His sire, Shamardal, completed a classic double winning the Poule d'Essai des Poulains (G1) and Prix du Jockey-Club (G1) over 10.5 furlongs at Chantilly. Casamento's dam, Wedding Gift, was fifth in the Prix de Diane (G1) at Chantilly, also over 10.5 furlongs, but this family has been mainly about milers and it is doubtful that Casamento will stay the 12-furlong Derby trip. Perhaps he will end up at Chantilly too this summer.



Published: 2011-04-25 13:06:59

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