Certify pips Purr Along to take May Hill Stakes
Report: Doncaster, Friday
Barrett Steel May Hill Stakes (Group 2) 1m, 2yo fillies
CERTIFY provided Godolphin with a third straight victory in the May Hill at Doncaster but only after a thrilling nose-to-nose dual with Purr Along through the final furlong.
After two wins on Newmarket's July Course, including the Group 3 Sweet Solera on her last start, Certify was sent off odds-on to follow on from White Moonstone and Lyric Of Light to land the race for Sheikh Mohammed's racing behemoth.
Reyaadah was popped into the lead by champion jockey Paul Hanagan, who was in no hurry to press on, with Certify tucked into the middle of the pack.
Mickael Barzalona was travelling sweetly on Certify and watched as Purr Along was brought stealthily from behind him by Martin Dwyer to race alongside.
At this point it was one Derby-winning jockey against another and it briefly looked as though Dwyer had the upper hand as he held in Certify before kicking on just outside the furlong marker.
Mahmood Al Zarooni: plans to run Certify at Newmarket or in FrancePICTURE: Edward Whitaker
Purr Along got half a length up on the favourite but could not shake her off and inch by inch she was reeled in, surrendering her advantage with less than half a furlong to run.
Gallantly, Purr Along continued to fight back against the favourite, eventually going down by a head, with Light Up My Life running on for third eight lengths behind the second.
Al Zarooni said: "Mickael said they went a slow pace and she showed class to come from behind. Usually when they go a slow pace they win from the front.
"She'll either go for the Prix Marcel Boussac or the Fillies' Mile at Newmarket. We'd prefer to go to Newamarket but we'll have to see how she is."
Certify was left unchanged as 10-1 favourite for the Qipco 1,000 Guineas by William Hill.