The UAE 1000 Guineas Trial is usually a first look at stakes-level sophomore fillies in Dubai and has often been an unveiling of possible future stars.
Such was the case once again on Thursday night at Meydan Racecourse when Godolphin’s Saeed bin Suroor-trained Soft Whisper let the secret out with a 2 1/2-length win in the seven-furlong conditions affair.
Stalking comfortably in mid-pack throughout the first three furlongs, the daughter of Dubawi from the family of European Horse of the Year Peintre Celebre tipped out under confident Pat Cosgrave handling, gobbled up ground on front-running Jumeirah Beach and then put away that foe, while holding off a pair of stablemates who filled out the trifecta, Last Sunset and Final Thought. Satish Seemar-trained first-time starter Al Maroom ran on respectably for fourth.
Expected favourite Super Chianti was scratched earlier in the day, but will likely line up against the winner in the UAE 1000 Guineas (Listed) in three weeks or the UAE Oaks (G3) thereafter.
The final time was 1:26.72 for the 1400m and the victory improved her record to three wins and two seconds from five starts.
“She just took a little time to sort of get her act together,” Pat Cosgrave said.
“She’s improved race by race. I really thought she’d win today. I didn’t think so after 50 yards for a stride or two–things weren’t going to plan–but those good horses usually get out of trouble. I was trying to find the right horse to take me into the race and luckily enough it worked out nicely.
“The good thing about her is she got a little bit of sand in her face and she faced it,” Cosgrave continued.
“She had to work hard, which isn’t always ideal. She’ll improve plenty. I think going a mile she’ll be better. She’s a nice filly. It took me until the 800m to pull her up. She’s by Dubawi and they get better with racing and she’s a nice, big, scopey filly.”