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Magic Lily weaves her spell again in G2 Balanchine


Magic Lily confirmed her position as the best older filly or mare on turf at this year’s Dubai World Cup Carnival with a game victory in the G2 Balanchine over nine furlongs at Meydan, UAE, on Thursday, 13 February.

The Charlie Appleby-trained daughter of New Approach, a short-head winner of the mile G2 Cape Verdi at the course on Thursday, 16 January, was soon settled in fourth of the eight-strong field by William Buick.

Magic Lily started to take closer order with three furlongs to race and moved up powerfully to take second entering the final quarter-mile. The five-year-old reeled in Maamora with just over a furlong to race and galloped out well to beat the Cape Verdi runner-up Nisreen by a length and a quarter.

Charlie Appleby said: “Magic Lily seems to be growing up. She came out here with only four runs under her belt and I would like to thank Shane Ryan and his team, who came and did a bit of gate work with her at home. She has got into a lovely rhythm tonight and I was always confident that she would hit the line strong.

“I felt we outstayed Nisreen in the Cape Verdi and was confident that stepping up in trip was going to be Magic Lily’s forte. We thought a mile would be short for her but her class prevailed in the Cape Verdi and she is a big enough filly to carry a penalty.

“She could perhaps fall into the G1 Jebel Hatta on Super Saturday (7 March), although we have Barney Roy for that race, so we could take her back to the UK and have some fun. Her first stop might be something like the G2 Dahlia Stakes over the stiff nine furlongs at Newmarket. There are plenty of nice races for her in Europe.”

William Buick said: “Magic Lily was always going to appreciate the extra furlong tonight and had come on for the Cape Verdi. In her typical fashion, she hit the front early in the straight and ground it out. She travels well and wears her heart on her sleeve – she is a real fighter.

“I was always conscious of getting first run on Nisreen because she has the turn of foot, as she showed in the Cape Verdi. Magic Lily stays this trip well and is a real fighter, so I was conscious of getting her going before Nisreen.

“She was third in the G1 Fillies’ Mile as a two-year-old, so she has plenty of class and it’s lovely to have her back. To win two G2 races in the space of four weeks is pretty good.”