Anamoe claims second in the 2021 G1 Cox Plate
Courageous Godolphin colt Anamoe announced his arrival at the elite level, weight-for-age racing against older horses when narrowly beaten in the AU$5 million G1 Cox Plate at Moonee Valley in Melbourne on Saturday, 23 October.
Anamoe beat all but Irish raider State Of Rest in the 2,040m weight-for-age championship of Australasia where a protest was lodged following suspected interference in the final strides.
Stewards took more than 30 minutes to dismiss the protest after State Of Rest (John Allen) rolled in and bumped Anamoe with 150m to gallop.
Many people believed the interference cost Anamoe his racing line and momentum before both horses crossed the line centimetres apart.
“Contact was made, we had grounds to hopefully overturn the positions in the stewards' room but we weren’t so fortunate. That’s racing and we move on," jockey Craig Williams said.
“He is a serious racehorse and for a three-year-old to go so close, he’s a real Australian star in the making. Looking forward to his future starts and unfortunately, we ran second today.”
Reigning Australian Horse of the Year Verry Elleegant finished hard for third place.
The past-the-post result stood, however, robbing Anamoe of becoming Godolphin’s first Cox Plate winner and the first three-year-old in nearly four decades since Red Anchor completed the Caulfield Guineas-Cox Plate double.
The dazzling Anamoe, by Street Boss out of the Australasian Oaks winner Anamato, was chasing his third G1 victory after dominant wins in the ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes and the Caulfield Guineas, and placings in the G1 Golden Slipper and G1 Blue Diamond respectively.
Gallant in defeat, Anamoe's effort further cemented his place on the Darley stallion roster.
At the same track the previous night, Anamoe’s stablemate Ingratiating also stamped his ticket as a future G1 winner with an unlucky third in the $1 million Manikato Stakes over 1,200m.
Giving age and experience to all his rivals under the weight-for-age conditions of the big sprint, Ingratiating, by Frosted out of the great producer Obsequious, ran a terrific third under Williams behind Jonker and Bella Nipotima despite dwelling as the gates released.
Cummings indicated Ingratiating would now tackle the G1 Coolmore Stakes at Flemington next weekend.
Earlier on Saturday, Ojai made an auspicious debut for Godolphin with a determined win under jockey Tim Clark in the Kirkham Stakes for two-year-olds over 1,000m at Randwick.
The Exceed And Excel filly, out of the Medaglia D’Oro mare Matilija, weaved between runners in the final 200m to grab Queen Of The Ball and Snitcat to start the day on a terrific note for Team Godolphin.