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Fashionista doubles up in Sparkling Lady Cup


Street Sense mare Fashionista put up another tenacious effort to capture the local G3 Sparkling Lady Cup for a second successive year at Kawasaki, Japan, on Wednesday, 15 July.

The Takayuki Yasuda-trained six-year-old, a four-length winner of the NAR highlight in 2019, raced in second under Kawada Masaru for most of the mile dirt contest.

She rallied when pressed on her outside at the top of the straight and stayed on gamely all the way to the line, hitting the front inside the final half-furlong to score by three-quarters of a length.

Harry Sweeney, President of Godolphin in Japan, said: “Fashionista is one of the unsung heroes of our racing stable. She has been an incredibly consistent racehorse and has finished in the first three in 18 of her 21 career starts to date. She has danced every single dance and, with her most recent win, her racetrack earnings to date now exceed US$2,000,000.

“You would imagine that any racehorse that was a millionaire twice over would be a racing household name but not so for Fashionista as she has largely operated under the radar for the last five racing seasons. Though trained in the JRA, she races exclusively on dirt which is the less glamorous of the JRA surfaces. Though 51% of JRA races are in fact on the inner dirt circuit, there are only 15 Graded races in the entire JRA calendar, which poses somewhat of a glass ceiling for dirt horses.

“Consequently, elite JRA dirt horses are required to race in mixed NAR/JRA races on the NAR circuit. With so few races available, competition is always fierce. And in a further discrimination against dirt horses, NAR grades races, like The Sparkling Lady Cup which Fashionista won last night, are designated as Jpn3 and only granted Listed status in international catalogues!

“Fashionista won this same race last year and we were tempted to retire her at the end of the season. However, we felt that there was another big race in her and are relieved that she was able to add further winning Black Type to her page on only her third start this year. We have not yet discussed future plans with her trainer but expect that she will be aimed at the Jpn1 JBC Ladies’ Classic in November in which she finished third in both 2018 and 2019. She may run once more in the interim but definitely will be retired to the paddocks at the end of the year.”