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King George analysis: 'Adayar might not be the best colt in his stable'

Richard Lowther gives his opinion on a scintillating Ascot performance

Adayar streaks clear of Mishriff and Love at Ascot
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A compelling renewal of this stellar event, which was first run 70 years ago. Wonderful Tonight was withdrawn on the day because the rain didn't materialise, which detracted from the race a little, while Pyledriver was ruled out earlier in the week. With Broome having missed the break, there wasn't much pace on early but Wayne Lordan's mount was in front after a couple of furlongs making for a true enough test from that point, and the time 2.56sec inside the standard.


King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes: full result and race replay


Adayar

Adayar produced a storming performance to become the first Derby winner since Galileo 20 years ago to win this race, albeit he's just the fourth to have tried since, and the first three-year-old colt to succeed since Nathaniel in 2011.

Disconcertingly keen early on, this strong, imposing individual went past the leader in the straight and powered on, showing himself just as effective on a sound surface as he had been on softish ground at Epsom.

There can be no doubt that he's a high-class Derby winner, but of course he might not even be the best colt in his stable with Hurricane Lane, third at Epsom after losing two shoes, franking that form in the Irish Derby and the Grand Prix de Paris.

Connections will have to do some head scratching to keep their two stars apart, with both well worthy of a campaign geared around the Arc.

Essentially a galloper, not a quickener, this colt will be a threat wherever he turns up and won't mind softer conditions should he go to Longchamp. He'd win the St Leger were he allowed to run, but they surely won't go that route with him.

Adayar: destined for the very top off the back of this performance


Who is better – Hurricane Lane or Adayar? Our experts have their say


Mishriff

Mishriff wasn't fully tuned up when runner-up in the Eclipse, having been off the track for more than three months, and he ran right up to his best here.

This admirably versatile performer got to within half a length of the winner at one stage up the straight and emerged with full credit in defeat, conceding 11lb in weight for age.

The Juddmonte International could be next for him, and he'd appreciate the return to that sort of trip.

Love

Love, with the 3lb fillies' allowance, was best in by that amount on BHA figures, but was unable to extend her sequence of successive Group 1 wins to five.

She made all in the Prince of Wales's Stakes here last month but took a lead this time, and seemed to be beaten on merit. She also carried her head to one side, but that said she wasn't losing ground on the two colts up the straight.

Aidan O'Brien has won the King George only once since 2008, with Highland Reel five years previously, and has had ten losers in the race since.

This filly remains capable of adding more big prizes, although she won't want autumnal soft ground and her stable also has Snowfall to represent them.

Love (left): could come unstuck on softer ground later this season


Race report: 'These horses don't come around often' – Derby hero Adayar emulates Galileo


Broome

Broome, who made all to win the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud recently, missed the break so took a bit of time to reach the front here. After setting a strong pace he had no answers when headed, first by the winner, but he probably ran close to form.

Lone Eagle

Lone Eagle was rather disappointing in his attempt to emulate his sire and grandsire, both winners of this race. He was quickly left behind by the principals from the two pole although he would have salvaged fourth in another stride. Martyn Meade reported that he'd run flat. Hurricane Lane only beat him a neck at the Curragh but it would be unwise to use him as a reliable yardstick to compare that colt and Adayar. 


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What they said

William Buick, rider of Adayar
Charlie wasn't worried [about the ground] and good horses can adapt and that's exactly what this horse did. It was a very simple race to ride once Adayar dropped his head and when I picked him up he was instant and relentless until the line.

John Gosden, co-trainer of Mishriff
I've always said after winning this race with Nathaniel, Taghrooda and Enable as three-year-olds that they're helped by getting a lot of weight from the older horses. The winner looks incredibly good but Mishriff has run an absolute blinder. We'll head on now to the Juddmonte International.


Read more on Saturday's racing:

Good for the Derby, King George and racing: Adayar is truly a horse to savour (Members' Club)

Red-hot favourite Mohaafeth beaten as Bangkok prevails in three-way tussle

Zain Claudette holds on to provide Ray Dawson with emotional first Group win

'I've made this race my own' – Tom Scudamore the jockey for York sprint again

Al Shaqab among the winners on the July course ahead of Goodwood challenge


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Connections will have to do some head scratching to keep their two stars apart, with both well worthy of a campaign geared around the Arc
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