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Hurricane Lane breezes to glory in G1 St Leger


Hurricane Lane secured his second Classic and third consecutive G1 success with a commanding victory in the St Leger at Doncaster, UK, on Saturday, 11 September.

The Frankel colt had already firmly established himself among the upper echelons of an outstanding group of Godolphin three-year-olds throughout the world this year with scintillating wins for Charlie Appleby in the Irish Derby and Grand Prix de Paris.

Encountering an extended 14 furlongs for the first time, Hurricane Lane soon settled one off the rail in sixth as Interpretation led the 10 runners.

Hurricane Lane continued to travel kindly under William Buick and cruised into the race passing the three-furlong pole, moving up to third soon after as Derby second Mojo Star took up the running.

The Godolphin runner quickened powerfully to hit the front just inside the final quarter-mile and readily forged clear of his rivals, galloping out strongly to score by two and three-quarter lengths in the world’s oldest Classic.

Charlie Appleby said: “It was a fantastic performance from Hurricane Lane. I would like to say many congratulations to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed and team Godolphin. It’s great to win any Classic, but to win the final one and such an historic race is extra special.

“William said you couldn’t have asked for a better race. He had a lovely pitch round and all the room he needed. The great thing about this horse is that he quickens. For a staying horse, he has a gear change.

“You couldn’t have been more comfortable watching it the whole way round, he travels for fun. He has won on quick ground but is more comfortable with underfoot conditions on the slower side, like today.

“I thought it was a great performance and the Derby form has held up as well, with Mojo Star running a great race in second. I think there was strength in depth today and what we want to see in a Classic.

“I have to give a lot of credit to the team at home, who have done a fantastic job. Hurricane Lane has given us a couple of days when he has challenged us but Maurizio Pasquale, who rides him, has done a fantastic job, along with Marie Murphy, Alex Merriam and the whole team. Phil Brook, the farrier, has done a great job because Hurricane Lane takes a bit of managing getting his shoes on.

“I think the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe is definitely something we will keep an eye on. We will let the dust settle but I see no reason why we won’t potentially be turning up. Whether he stays in training as a four-year-old will be a discussion for the end of the season.

“As two physical specimens, you could only get excited about him and Adayar being around as four-year-olds. We know His Highness is such a great sporting man, who loves to see these horses stay in training. We have seen so many greats down through the years for Godolphin and I am just the fortunate one bringing a couple along myself.”

William Buick said: “Hurricane Lane was the class horse in the race and it worked out beautifully. You never know until you go this far with a three-year-old but he took me into the race so nicely and has that turn of foot at the end as well.

“He is a great horse and it’s lovely to win the St Leger with him. It has been a fantastic season for everybody and this is what His Highness Sheikh Mohammed and everyone at home strives for.

“He is a jockeys dream and a lovely horse to ride. You can put him anywhere in the race and he relaxes, which is obviously vital over this distance. What has impressed me over his last two or three starts is the way he quickens as well at the end – he really did put the race to bed. He is a fantastic horse and I am sure that there is still more room for improvement.”