Notable Speech and William Buick strike 2000 Guineas gold for Godolphin

Charlie Appleby-trained Dubawi colt beats favourite City Of Troy to clinch English Flat racing season's first Classic

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Notable Speech under William Buick won the 2000 Guineas for Godolphin on Saturday to extend his unbeaten run to four at Newmarket.

The Dubawi colt, making his turf debut after the three wins on the Tapeta, made smooth progress from the middle of the field to get the better of strong-travelling Jean-Luc Lagardere winner Rosallion by a length and a half. Richard Hannon-trained stablemate Haatem, the Craven Stakes winner, finished third.

Aidan O’Brien’s undefeated City Of Troy raced prominently under Ryan Moore but was one of the first horses under pressure and eventually finished ninth of the 11 runners.

“He really was impressive. He's the kind of horse who I've not known for that long. I came back from Dubai and rode him in February and here we are,” said Buick after winning the English Flat racing season's opening Classic for the first time.

“I've not very often believed in a horse as much as this guy. I've had that much belief in him and sometimes you go home at night and think 'have I lost the plot all together?' because that's how he does things, he does it so easily and his change of gear is incredible.

“The race couldn't have worked out any better, fair play to the team he was in great form today. He's done nothing but improve. I've gone close in the 2000 Guineas a few times so I'm over the moon. These races are incredibly hard to win but I'm overjoyed.

“He's an out-and-out miler, he's all about speed. He's got a strong mind, I really think he's a horse who is going to keep improving.”

Notable Speech will now have the St James's Palace Stakes over a mile at Royal Ascot next month as his next option. It is his only current entry. The last horse to do that double was the ill-fated Coroebus in the same royal blue silks two years ago.

The victory is the fifth success in the race for Vice President and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s racing operation Godolphin after triumphs with Mark Of Esteem (1996), Island Sands (1999), Dawn Approach (2013) and Coroebus (2022). Pennekamp also won in the sheikh's maroon silks in 1995.

Notable Speech's trainer Charlie Appleby said: “You don’t see too many come off an all-weather success to a Guineas success, we’ve given him all the time, thinking he was a good horse.

“He was given that time, a few lads sat on him last year in August time, when you start to see these horses developing more, and they were just saying ‘he’s a nice horse’.

“He was still far too weak to do anything with, as always I’m in the very privileged position to be allowed to give the horses the time that they need, with no pressure.

“He came out on the all-weather there and we all know what he did – he was three from three – in that last start, I think he put a bit of a ‘wow factor’ into what he achieved, with his acceleration.

“William did say ‘I think he’s a French Guineas’ horse because he’s quick, and so therefore we toyed with whether to go there. We were waiting for the Craven to see how the Guineas picture would formulate and we decided to put him in the Guineas.

“We brought him here for a racecourse gallop to give ourselves more confidence in running the horse and that morning here, he was exciting.”

Updated: May 04, 2024, 5:44 PM