Sunday, October 7, 2012
Ridasiyna clear l'Opera winner
By Myra Lewyn
The Aga Khan's Ridasiyna rallied from well off the pace to collar Izzi Top in the final 200 meters and score a clear win the Qatar Prix de l'Opera on Oct. 7 at Longchamp.
With less than a quarter mile to run Izzi Top took charge from pacesetter Manieree, who set a strong early tempo, but Ridasiyna, who was fifth turning into the straight, rallied willingly on the far outside under Christophe Lemaire to reel in the leader and shake free to a 3 1/2-length victory.
Ridasiyna, a 3-year-old filly by Motivator, made amends for a fifth-place finish to Romantica in the Prix de la Nonette-Shadwell on Aug. 21 at Deauville after winning her first three starts by a combined 12 lengths. She has two other stakes wins on her record, including the Prix Chloe in her start prior to the Nonette.
Trained by Mikel Delzangles, Ridasiyna covered 1 1/4 miles (2,000 meters) in 2:11.13 on heavy turf to post her first group I win. She earned an automatic starting berth in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park via the Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win and You're In" series.
"She's a filly who need a good rhythm to her races and that was the key today," Delzangles told the Racing Post. "She was really relaxed today and that was the way she finished."
The Prix de l'Opera was the first win in a Group 1 double on the card for Delzangles, who also won the Qatar Prix du Cadran with Molly Malone.
The testing turf conditions took a toll on French Group 1 winner Giofra, who just missed catching Izzi Top for second. She finished third, a short neck behind the Irish Group 1 winner. French group I winner Galikova, a half sister to champion Goldikova, was never in contention and finished sixth in the 13-horse field.
French-bred Ridasiyna is out of the winning Darshaan mare Ridafa, whose five starters are all winners.