2016 J&B Met winner Smart Call failed to deliver the goods when contesting the Gr2 Moyglare ‘Jewels’ Blandford Stakes on Day 2 of the 2017 Longines Irish Champions Weekend at the Curragh on Sunday.
While the daughter of Ideal World has managed decent placed efforts – including catching the eye with a third in the Gr2 Betfred Middleton Stakes during the Dante festival at York and a fair fourth behind Qemah in the Gr2 Duke of Cambridge Stakes at Ascot – she is yet to win outside of South Africa.
Smart Call made her Irish debut in the Gr1 Pretty Polly Stakes on 2 July, running just off the pace before being unable to find any extra over the final furlong to finish mid-field. She crossed the Channel to France on 20 August to line up for the Gr1 Darley Prix Jean Romanet at Deauville. She suffered a heavy bump at the top of the straight, but regrouped gamely to finish 1 1/2 lengths 4th behind Ajman Princess. That prep suggested she would have a decent chance in the Blandford.
With Donnacha O’Brien in the saddle on Sunday, Jessica Slack’s smart mare raced wide on the turn as Shamreen made all and was right there until about 200m out when she started fading and she eventually finished unplaced and six lengths behind the winner.
She is now trained by Sir Michael Stoute and it was her fifth start overseas