South Africa’s 2016 Gr1 J&B Met winner, Smart Call, bids for the Curragh’s Group 2 Moyglare ‘Jewels’ Blandford Stakes on Day 2 of the 2017 Longines Irish Champions Weekend.
After winning the 2016 Paddock Stakes and earning a ‘Win And You’re In’ starting berth in the 2016 Breeders’ Cup, Smart Call made it a Cape feature season double to beat the boys in the 2016 J&B Met, before heading abroad to seek her fortune.
Injury put paid to her Breeders’ Cup hopes as well as the rest of her 2016 campaign and she transferred to the yard of Sir Michael Stout in April this year.
After a 474 day layoff, Smart Call made her international debut in the 1m 2 1/2 furlong Group 2 Betfred Middleton Stakes during the Dante festival at York. With Jim Crowley in the saddle, she finished an eye-catching 1 1/2 lengths third to Blond Me in good to soft going on 18 May.
On 21 June 2017, she took her chances at Ascot, in the Group 2 Duke of Cambridge Stakes over a mile, finishing 1 3/4 length 4th to Qemah under Ryan Moore.
Smart Call made her Irish debut in the 10 furlong Group 1 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 1m 2 furlong Group 1 Darley Prix Jean Romanet Group 1 at Deauville. With regular pilot Jim Crowley in the saddle, they suffered a heavy bump at the top of the straight, but regrouped gamely to finish 1 1/2 lengths 4th behind Ajman Princess.
Sunday, 10 September 2017 is day 2 of the Longines Irish Champions Weekend and the Group 2 Blandford Stakes is contested over 1m 2 furlongs at the Curragh. The going is set as yielding and Smart Call has the services of Donnacha O’Brien in the saddle. The field will face the starter at 15:35 South African time.
Smart Call (Ideal World – Good Judgement) was bred by Mauritzfontein Stud and is the winner of seven races from 7f to 1m 2f on good ground.