Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 22 October 2020

Space Blues delivers for Godolphin at Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest

The stables' other entry, Earthlight, finished fourth, his first defeat in seven starts

Space Blues, ridden by William Buick won the Lennox Stakes at Goodwood Festival before landing the biggest prize of his career at Deauville. PA
Space Blues, ridden by William Buick won the Lennox Stakes at Goodwood Festival before landing the biggest prize of his career at Deauville. PA

It was second time lucky at Deauville for Space Blues, who produced a spectacular late burst to clinch the Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest in the silks of Godolphin on Sunday.

Third behind Advertise in the race 12 months ago, the Charlie Appleby-trained four-year-old finished ahead of Hello Youmzain and Lope Y Fernandez by three-quarter lengths and a head, respectively.

A short head further down in fourth was Godolphin’s other entry, Earthlight, who suffered his first defeat in seven starts.

Golden Horde set the early pace, with Earthlight following close behind while Hello Youmzain raced prominently close to the rails in the early part of the six and-a-half furlong trip. William Buick had Space Blues settled towards the back of the field.

Hello Youmzain and Earthlight, joined by Lope Y Fernandez, then took over the running but none had an answer to the blistering finishing power of Space Blues.

“His profile this year has just been faultless. Every time he's stepped up in grade he's been more impressive," Appleby said.

“A lot of credit goes to the team at home. Paulo who rides him at home does a fantastic job looking after him. I'm delighted, he deserves to win a Group 1.”

The result took Godolphin’s Group 1 tally to 11 and win No 356 worldwide for the year.

Space Blues missed out on a Group 1 prize last year when runner-up behind Too Darn Hot in the Prix Jean Prat followed by a third place finish in the Prix Maurice de Gheest both at Deauville.

Space Blues spent the winter in Dubai and for the first time in his 12 career starts finished outside the top four in the Group 3 Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint at Meydan on March.

On his return to the UK, he bounced back to win three races on the trot, including a Group 3 and Group 2, before flying across the channel to land his biggest career prize.

Updated: August 9, 2020 08:33 PM

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