BECKFORD ON COURSE FOR ROYAL ASCOT
BATED BREATH three-year-old Beckford made a stakes-winning US debut on Saturday (28th April), which has put him firmly on course for a tilt at the Commonwealth Cup Gr.1.
Beckford, bred by Joyce Wallsgrove and owned by Newtown Anner Stud Farm, was a Gr.2 winning two-year-old last season and was twice runner-up at Gr.1 level for his then-trainer Gordon Elliott. After an admirable fifth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Gr.1, he remained in the US to be trained by Brendan Walsh.
Taken from the Thoroughbred Daily News, 29th April 2018:
Beckford had it all to do entering the stretch run of the William Walker Stakes, but jumped out of the ground at the eighth pole and whooshed home for a brilliant victory.
Away cleanly, but void of any serious early speed, Beckford raced at the tail end of the leading group as Salmanazar cut out a pace that was sensible at best. The latter was still going great guns turning for home and, with those immediately chasing him making hard work of it, looked on his way to a front-running victory. But Julien Leparoux had all the aces, as he allowed Beckford to split horses at the three-sixteenths and the talented colt took care of the rest, rolling over the pacesetter in the shadow of the wire for a highly impressive score.
Previously trained by Gordon Elliott, Beckford won his first two career outings, including the Railway Stakes Gr.2, then was runner-up in the Phoenix Stakes Gr.1 and Vincent O'Brien National Stakes Gr.1, both as the betting favorite. Fifth as the chalk in the Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes Gr.1, he travelled for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Gr.1 and came from last in the field of 14 to finish fifth, beaten just two lengths behind Mendelssohn.
One of two stakes winners and the lone group winner for his young Juddmonte UK-based sire (by DANSILI), Beckford is
out of a winning half-sister to Group winner Poet's Word, recent runner-up in the Dubai Sheema Classic Gr.1, and to multiple Group winner Malabar.
Click here to read a TDN interview with Brendan Walsh
Click here to view the race
Date: 29 April 2018