Qipco 1000 Guineas: Lezoo's Classic aspirations rest on trial run

·3-min read
Getty Images

Somewhat unfortunate not to go through her two-year-old campaign unbeaten, Ralph Beckett's charge won four of her five starts in 2022 and finished the year by landing the Cheveley Park Stakes in superb fashion at Newmarket in September.

Despite racing over no more than six furlongs so far, that Group One victory opened up the prospect of stepping up to a mile for a crack at the first fillies' Classic of the season - a race for which she is as short as 12-1. The likes of the Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes (Newmarket, April 19) and the Dubai Duty Free Stakes (Fred Darling, Newbury, April 22) are on the horizon and Jamie McCalmont, racing manager for Lezoo's owner Marc Chan, believes she needs to be tested over a longer trip before a Classic run can be considered. He said: "If she's ready to run in a trial, then she could run in a trial, but we wouldn't run in the Guineas without a run. "Her form is solid - she never ran a bad race last year and was unlucky not to be unbeaten. But we wouldn't go and run her straight away in the Guineas without a trial and we are under three weeks away now from those races. We'll have to see, there's nothing wrong with her, but we'll see. "Plans are fairly open with her at this stage. If she wasn't ready in time for one of those races (a trial), I would be very surprised if we went in the Guineas - we would probably just stay sprinting then, but we will see." Balancing the Zoustar filly's proven quality over sprint distances with the lure of Classic glory is a tough calculation for connections ahead of the new campaign - especially considering Meditate, the horse Lezoo conquered to claim Cheveley Park honours, is currently trading as the second favourite for the mile contest. "When you have a horse that gives you everything, you don't really want to make her do something she's not bred or built to do," continued McCalmont. "The Guineas is an open enough race - the Dermot Weld filly (Tahiyra) I think was the really top filly last year. But Lezoo beat Meditate last time and she came back and won at the Breeders' Cup with ease, so the form is solid. "With (1000 Guineas runner-up) Prosperous Voyage this time last year, we didn't really think we would make the Guineas and then all of a sudden she came right. But at least with her we knew she would stay the mile. This filly is by Zoustar who seems to be best at six to seven (furlongs) and then her dam didn't run beyond six furlongs, so the Guineas is a bit of an ask. "There looks to be plenty of depth to the sprint division with the three-year-olds. The Commonwealth Cup is a race that is probably a more realistic target than the Guineas, but then that could end up being one of the better races at Ascot this year. It certainly wouldn't be a weak spot anyway."

The article Qipco 1000 Guineas: Lezoo’s Classic aspirations rest on trial run appeared first on Planetsport.com.