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Dance Sequence narrowly denied in G3 Nell Gwyn Stakes


Dance Sequence secured her 1,000 Guineas place with a rallying neck second in the seven-furlong G3 Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket on Wednesday, 17 April.

The Dubawi homebred, successful in the G3 Godolphin Lifetime Care Oh So Sharp Stakes over the course and distance on her final juvenile appearance, settled in mid-division as all bar Kathmandu and Lexington Belle raced towards the stands’ side.

Having stayed on between horses passing the two-furlong pole, Dance Sequence went third a furlong and a half out and bore down on the leading duo of Pretty Crystal and Kathmandu.

Dance Sequence wandered around under pressure, drifting into Pretty Crystal as she took second from Kathmandu with half a furlong to race.

The Charlie Appleby-trained three-year-old continued to find for William Buick but could not quite get on terms with fellow Dubawi filly Pretty Crystal, with the duo finishing two lengths clear of Kathmandu.

Charlie Appleby said: “We are delighted with Dance Sequence. I said to William in the paddock, ‘don’t forget how raw she was last year when winning’. She has been handled very well through the winter and the most important day is in two and a half weeks’ time.

“Today was a stepping stone towards the Guineas and it happened exactly how we thought it might do. There was a bit of pace on and, when they started to quicken, those six and seven-furlong horses just caught her out. Once the penny dropped and she hit the rising ground, it looked as though she was going to do it, but then she had a look at the stands. It was all a bit raw, but importantly there is improvement there mentally as well as fitness-wise.”

Dance Sequence features among four Godolphin entries for the 1,000 Guineas on Sunday, 5 May, and Charlie Appleby outlined plans for his other contenders – Romantic Style, Devoted Queen and Cinderella’s Dream.

The trainer added: “Romantic Style won the trial in France and will go for the Poule d'Essai des Pouliches. I feel the easier mile around a bend will suit her.

“We have been pleased with Devoted Queen. She is a two-from-two filly, although Kempton did not look the sort of race you would jump from straight into a Classic, so she is likely to head to York for the Listed Michael Seely Memorial Stakes.

“On the back of Dance Sequence running as well as she has, we will make a call on whether Cinderella’s Dream comes here as well or goes to France. She has come back from Dubai in great order, and we have been sitting on the fence regarding plans until Dance Sequence ran today. It is also possible we could keep Cinderella’s Dream fresh for the Irish 1,000 Guineas.”