/ Racing

Integral to face familiar foes in Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket

Updated: Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 15:58 | Comments

The score between Integral and Sky Lantern is locked at 1-1
The score between Integral and Sky Lantern is locked at 1-1

Integral bids to add that all-important Group One success to her CV when she renews rivalry with some old adversaries in the Qipco Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket on Friday.

The four-year-old, owned and bred by Cheveley Park Stud, won at Listed and Group Three level last season and notched a Group Two triumph in the Duke of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Integral had four of her Falmouth opponents behind her that day - Purr Along (third), Sky Lantern (fifth), Irish raider Peace Burg (seventh) and Certify (12th).

The  Michael Stoute-trained filly was taking her revenge on Sky Lantern for a length defeat in the Sun Chariot Stakes on Newmarket's Rowley Mile course last September.

"She came out her race at Ascot very well. She looks to have done well physically," said Cheveley Park's managing director Chris Richardson.

"Obviously this is a big step up and she's taking on the likes of Sky Lantern at level weights.

"That filly will probably have improved and hopefully ours has too a little bit. We're happy enough and I wouldn't want to swap her for anything else in the race."

Sky Lantern lost out in a highly-controversial finish with Elusive Kate 12 months ago and bids to put the record straight on the back of a satisfactory appearance at Royal Ascot.

She was only fifth to Integral, but is 5lb better off and Sky Lantern's trainer Richard Hannon reports her to have come on in leaps and bounds for that run.

"Sky Lantern is already a four-time Group One winner, so owes us nothing, but we think there could be more to come," he told www.richardhannonracing.co.uk.

"We were not surprised she did not win at Royal Ascot as she is built like a colt and, as with last year, she was always going to need her first run.

"She went there weighing almost 500kg, but the race did her a power of good, and she has looked more like her old self in the last couple of weeks and was around 480kg when we put her on the scales the other morning.

"Integral is a very good filly, but we enjoy a 5lb pull and we hope she might be able to reverse the Duke of Cambridge form. She will need to improve, but we think she has."

Purr Along was a fine third, beaten four lengths, in that Group Two and her trainer Johnny Murtagh believes she can get closer to Intergral.

"We were pleased with her at Ascot. She came out of the race good," said the County Kildare handler.

"She has a few lengths to make up on Integral and we're hoping we can get near her this time."

Certify was well-beaten in that Royal Ascot race which had Charlie Appleby shaking his head.

However, the Godolphin trainer is hoping a return to the track where she won three times as a two-year-old, including a verdict over Sky Lantern, could bring out a revival in her fortunes.

"I was disappointed with Certify's run at Royal Ascot," Appleby told www.godolphin.com.

"We were happy with her preparation for that race and we have no excuses for her.

"She has come out of that race well and we felt that these race conditions suited her - she has a good record at Newmarket and likes racing against a small field."

Rizeena, one of two members of the younger generation of fillies in the line-up along with Kiyoshi, bounced back to her best with victory in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot won in 2013 by Sky Lantern.

Connections snapped up Olivier Peslier to take the mount as Ryan Moore, who rode her that day, has been claimed for Integral.

"Olivier Peslier is as good a jockey as there is, I rate him very highly," said trainer Clive Brittain.

"Rizeena is in very good form and I am looking forward to Friday. She has done very well since Ascot and her work has been good.

"She has never won at Newmarket before but she has run very well there in defeat. I don't think the undulating course will be a problem - she works well on the Limekilns and the Al Bahathri and has never checked her stride."

Rain arrived at Newmarket on Thursday, and Brittain said: "She has won on softish ground and she's a big strong filly who I'm sure will be up to taking on older horses for the first time - she took on the colts last year."

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