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Borderlescott Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes 21.08.2009

Borderlescott forges clear to take his second Nunthorpe Stakes

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham 

Borderlescott: a genuine article of pure speed

Compton Place - Jeewan (Touching Wood

LAST week's Nunthorpe Stakes at York contained the usual variety of hopefuls, ranging from favourite Kingsgate Native, who was making his third start following an unsuccessful spell at stud, to youngpretender Radiohead and old favourites Tax Free, Benbaun and Borderlescott.

The public duly latched on to Kingsgate Native and Radiohead, letting them go off at 5/4 and 9/2. But although each acquitted themselves well enough to suggest that their day is not far away, they were truly put in their place by the seven-year-old Borderlescott.

While Radiohead was forced to make ground from the rear, Borderlescott showed enough toe to sit in the slipstream of the trailblazing eight-year-old Benbaun. A minor battle with the leader developed two furlongs out, but when Neil Callan switched his mount right in the final furlong, he ran down the leader and took control by a neck.

Borderlescott is not one of the country's most popular horses for nothing. Over the past two seasons, he has been a consistent feature in the top sprints and often runs with credit - in fact he has only ever finished out of the first four nine times from 43 starts, a creditable achievement given that the majority of his runs have come in large fields.

The son of Compton Place has been useful throughout his five-year career, opening his account in a 6f maiden at Hamilton in June of his two-year-old season before steadily climbing through the handicap ranks and beyond. As well consecutive wins in the Nunthorpe, a feat which evokes memories of Sharpo, his career has encompassed a Stewards Cup and a pair of Listed races, as well as placings in the Prix de l'Abbaye, Temple Stakes and Palace House Stakes.

If anything, Robin Bastiman's gelding appears to be still improving, and like several others by his sire, such as Malapropism and Compton's Eleven, is an extremely tough and sound customer. Bastiman maintains that he peaks at this time of the year, and if that continues to hold true, a third win in York's sprint showpiece is not out of the question.

As a product of a 1m4f-winning daughter of dual St Leger winner Touching Wood, it is tempting to assume that Borderlescott receives his aptitude for sprinting from his sire, the shock 1997 July Cup winner Compton Place.

When granted his favoured firm ground, Compton Place was a high-class sprinter, as his win over Royal Applause in the July Cup illustrates. However, that win was met with a muted response by the public, who had let the James Toller-trained three-year-old go off as the 50/1 joint outsider.

It was the biggest upset in the history of the July Cup, but there could be no doubting his authority as he traveled strongly behind the leaders before showing a good turn of foot to deny hot favourite Royal Applause.

The fact that Royal Applause finished three lengths clear of the third, Indian Rocket, added weight to the argument that the market leader had run up to form.

It was easy to see why the public would dismiss Compton Place. Although he had finished runner-up in the Gimcrack and Flying Childers' Stakes as a juvenile, he had opened the season with a slightly below par display in the Achilles Stakes before turning in a disappointing 12th-placed effort in the Cork And Orrery Stakes.

But it transpired that Compton Place was only really effective on firm ground and unfortunately, unsuitable ground as well as a life-threatening bout of colic contributed to four subsequent dismal outings.

Whitsbury Manor Stud, where he has spent the entirety of his stud career, has specialised in sprint stallions for many years and Compton Place has fitted that ethos well. Although he sires the odd middle-distance performer, he has not been as versatile as his sire, Indian Ridge, whose Group 1 performers range from Prix de l'Abbaye winner Namid to Irish Derby runner-up Definite Article.

In fact, Compton Place has not sired a single stakes winner beyond 1m - Grade 2 heroine Passified and minor stakes winner Place Cowboy are the only stakes scorers over that distance while Borderlescott heads the six to have earned their biggest success over 5f.

Compton Place's first crop gave immediate indication of his ability to get precocious horses with Pleasure Place - the first of his five stakes horses out of Night Shift mares - landing the Group 3 Prix d'Arenburg over 5f and Woodcote Stakes runner-up Monsieur Boulanger traveling stateside to take the Jim Bowie Stakes.

Since then, there has been more of the same, headed by the season of 2005 when the one-two in the Flying Childers Stakes in Godfrey Street and Hunter Street, Coventry Stakes runner-up Pacific Pride and the consistent older sprinter Boogie Street were among his representatives.

But while Compton Place's first four crops, born in 2000-2003, have produced 14 individual stakes winners, rather surprisingly only three have emerged from those since with none arising from the 2005 crop.

The past few seasons have, however, yielded the Group/Grade 2 winners Prolific and Passified, while Listed winner Paradise Rain is among this year's batch of juveniles. Next year could be his most interesting yet as it will contain 81 two-year-olds conceived off a fee of £10,000.

One of the most popular aspects of Compton Place is that he is an outcross for the ubiquitous Northern Dancer. Borderlescott's dam, however, is also free of Northern Dancer blood, and is instead twice inbred to Bold Ruler's dam Miss Disco, a pattern which also produced Grade 2 winners Boots ‘n Jackie and Star Touch.

Jeewan needed all of 1m4f as well as blinkers to get off the mark in a lowly Catterick maiden for her breeder Sheikh Hamdan and trainer Tom Jones, who previously had tried her over 2m1f.

Judging by those performances, she took more after her dual St Leger-winning sire Touching Wood - who left little of any consequence in Britain prior to his departure to New Zealand - rather than her dam, Adeebah, who Jones had trained to score over 5f as a two-year-old. In addition, Jeewan's brother, Taldari was best over 1m during a productive career in Austria.

That Adeebah should have entered the Shadwell fold as a yearling for $150,000 is not surprising given that she was out of Transylvania, a 6f-winning sister to the high-class dirt winners Jacinto - later a popular sire - and Niagara.

It is yet another family which traces to Pretty Polly, in this case via her Cheveley Park Stakes winning daughter Molly Desmond through the Lowther Stakes third Cascade.

The further reaches of this family are not short on speed and several of Jeewan's other offspring, notably Woodbury and Bello Gallico, were best over 6f. It will be fascinating to see how Jeewan's yearling filly by Compton Place, her first produce since coming out of retirement, fares when she reaches the track.

Bred by James Clark in GB. 13,000gns Doncaster October yearling by Robin Bastiman

Bred by R J Turner in GB. Ir92,000gns yearling Goffs Orby Sale. Won 3 (5-6f) of 12 starts at 2-3 years viz 2 out of 5 at 2 years, 1 (July Cup - Gr1) out of 4 at 3 years and 0 out of 3 at 4 years. Also 2nd Gimcrack Stakes - Gr2, Flying Childers' Stakes - Gr2 and Achilles Stakes - Listed. Earned £141,621.

Joint top-rated three-year-old sprinter in Europe in 1997. High-class sprinter at best, most effective on a firm surface, below formonly try on soft. RPR 107 at 2 years, 122 at 3 years and 104 at 4 years.

Well-bred. By a high-class sprinter who later rose through the ranks to become a leading sire and effective sire of sires. Half-brother to smart US miler and sire Mantles Star (by Beveled), and Grade 2-winning hurdler Quakers Field (by Anshan). Out of a Listed-placed triple sprint-winning two-year-old.

Stands at Whitsbury Manor Stud at a fee of £7,500 and sire of eight crops of racing age inc. notable winners Borderlescott (Nunthorpe Stakes - Gr1), Prolific (Gr2), Passified (Gr2), Godfrey Street (Gr2), Intrepid Jack (Gr3), Champion Place (Gr3), Hunter Street (Gr3), Shifting Place (Gr3), Pleasure Place (Gr3), Boogie Street etc


Bred by Derrinstown Stud in Ireland. Won 1 (1m4f) of 7 races at 3 years. Unraced at 2 years. Earned £2,156.

Compact, workmanlike filly, moderate mover. Progressive handicapper, effective on good to firm and good ground. Below form only try on soft. Tried as far as 2m1f. Blinkered final four starts. RPR -

Quite well-bred. By a dual St Leger winner, later a moderate sire. Sister to Taldari, champion two-year-old in Austria, half-sister to two other minor winners. Out of a winning half-sister to US Listed-placed Streetsmart Native.

Granddaughter of Listed winner Cascade, later the dam of Grade 2 winners Jacinto and Niagara. Traces to Pretty Polly.

To stud at 5 years and dam of: Bello Gallico (91 g Gallic League; winner ); Harry Browne (92 g Al Hareb;winner); Dells Dream (93 f Classic Music; unplaced); Sadler's Music (94 f Classic Music; unraced); Patricia Philomena (98 f Prince Of Birds; winner); Woodbury (99 f Woodborough; winner); First Fortune (00 g Primo Dominie; unplaced); Borderslescott (02 g Compton Place; Gr1 winner); Four Penny Road (03 f Josr Algarhoud; unraced). She also has a yearling filly by Compton Place.
No return in 1990, 1995, 1996, 1997. Not covered 2000, 2003, 2008.

Typical of his sire's stock in that he is a tough and genuine performer, who is also a credit to his trainer.





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