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York

  • 14:00 Betfred Middleton Stakes 1m 2f 88y

  • (Fillies' Group 2) £100,000 added 4yo+ 9 ran
  • Winner £56,710 2nd £21,500 3rd £10,760 4th £5,360
  • Going: Good
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 2m 11.62s
  • Off time: 14:00:10

Izzi tops Middleton rivals

Trainer maps out top-level campaign for improving filly

Last Updated: 17/05/12 3:29pm

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Izzi Top: Got the better of Sajjhaa in the Middleton Stakes

Izzi Top: Got the better of Sajjhaa in the Middleton Stakes

Izzi Top made it two out of two for the season in the Betfred Middleton Stakes at York, a race her dam had won nine years earlier.

John Gosden felt that that his filly had got away with a lack of race sharpness when successful at Newmarket on her seasonal reappearance and she needed to dig deep on the Knavesmire to repel the persistent challenge of Sajjhaa in a race that was run at a decent clip.

Mohedian Lady took the field along with William Buick sitting several lengths of the pace aboard the eventual winner.

The leader cried enough with around a quarter of a mile to run of the 10 furlongs but the pace already had several of her rivals off the bit and struggling to make up ground.

Neither the four year old daughter of Pivotal or the Godolphin owned Sajjhaa were among them with both moving ominously well but it was Buick's mount that proved the stronger, coming home with one and a half lengths to spare from last year's runner-up.

I'm A Dreamer came home well to take third after a troubled passage, just ahead of the game Barefoot Lady who ran on well despite being one of the first to come under pressure.

Top-Class

Buick said: "The horses have been running well all year. We've got a nice bunch of horses.

"I love this filly, she's top-class. She tries her hardest and what she really needs now is a Group One. She really deserves it (and) that would be the obvious next step up

"She jumps very well from the stalls and I could probably ride her from a bit further back, but they can't get away from her from the front.

"She was just looking around in front a bit, so today she was probably in front soon enough."

Gosden said: "She's a really lovely filly. She won on this day last day beating the Oaks winner (Dancing Rain) a head (in the Swettenham at Newbury), we obviously went on to finish third in the Oaks and I think she has improved quite a lot from three to four.

Obvious Targets

"It was a good performance today and the obvious targets for her now are the Nassau and the Prix de l'Opera.

"There's nothing for her at Ascot unless we came back to a mile for the Windsor Forest and that probably wouldn't be the most sensible thing to do.

"It's all about the second half of the season for her now and we'll try to find something along the way."

Saeed bin Suroor said of the runner-up: "She will improve a lot for the run. I just hoped she could finish in the first three today and she has run a very good race.

"We'll consider the options for her now and there's a Group Three at Epsom or the Windsor Forest at Royal Ascot. She's a stronger filly this year and more relaxed."

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