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Nathaniel - Royal Ascot 17.06.2011

Nathaniel: the Royal Ascot winner is a three-parts brother to Playful Act

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Newsells Park's Giants Play rules New York

GIANTS PLAY took full advantage of a soft lead in Saturday's Grade 2 New York Stakes over 1m2f at Belmont Park to record a head victory over the fast-finishing Zagora, with favourite Hibaayeb in third.

The first three all raced in Europe last year: four-year-old Giants Play was trained by Sir Michael Stoute to break her maiden at the fifth time of asking in a 1m4f Kempton maiden; Zagora won the Group 3 Prix de Psyche and Prix Vanteaux in France; and 2009 Fillies' Mile heroine Hibaayeb had won the Ribblesdale Stakes for Godolphin.

Purchased by John Warren for $850,000 at the 2008 Keeneland September yearling sale, Giants Play runs in the colours of Hertfordshire-based Newsells Park Stud and she is set to join the operation's broodmare band at the end of hercareer.

Her pedigree as well as her race record will make her a highly-prized breeding commodity; she is by Giant's Causeway and is the first foal produced by Fillies' Mile and Lancashire Oaks winner Playful Act, who sold for a then-record $10.5million at the 2008 Keeneland November breeding-stock sale.

Playful Act is, in turn, out of Musidora Stakes winner Magnificient Style, who has produced seven stakes winners including this month's impressive King Edward VII Stakes hero Nathaniel.

Magnificient Style (now owned by the Rothschild family), Playful Act and Giants Play were all sold in 2008 as part of a global reduction of the late Robert Sangster's Swettenham Stud stock.

Giants Play becomes the fifth northern-hemisphere stakes winner bred by Swettenham this year, a list headed by Classic scorers Dancing Rain and Roderic O'Connor.




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