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Alan on Ascot: Day Three

The day started with a score for the the U.S. when South Central (Forest Camp - Brittan Lee, by Forty Niner) -- a 13-length winner on his debut -- blazed the trail and then held on gamely for a narrow win.

South Central was bred in Kentucky by the partnership of Tony Holmes and Dr. Walter Zent, also breeders of juvenile champion Stevie Wonderboy and millionaire Zanjero. The result was received with a degree of satisfaction in this quarter, as we advise the partnership on their mating decisions.

South Central is by the now-exported Deputy Minister son Forest Camp. The dam, Brittan Lee, is half-sister to the graded stakes-winning Capsized, out of the Wavering Monarch mare Overturned. Winner of Arlington Oaks and Rare Treat Handicap (both gr. III), Overturned is a sister to Turn a Phrase (granddam of grade II winner Ready's Image); three-parts sister to stakes winners Wavering Scene and Flicker Queen (dam of grade II winner Stephanotis), and to Desert Queen (dam of grade I winner Marylebone); and half-sister to stakes winners Squall Valley and In Full View (dam of graded winner Nice Assay, and granddam of grade I winner Came Home).

South Central is one of four stakes winners - three graded - by Forest Camp out of Mr. Prospector-line mares, and is also the fifth graded winner by a Deputy Minister-line stallion out of a Forty Niner mare.

Another U.S.-bred to tally on Day Three was Stonerside Stable homebred Michita (Dynaformer - Thunder Kitten, by Storm Cat), who took the Ribblesdale Stakes (Eng-II), over 1 1/2 miles. The 3-year-old filly won the Height of Fashion Stakes - an Oaks Trial - on her debut this year, but failed to handle Epsom's notoriously difficult undulations in the Oaks (Eng-I) itself. Michita - who is out of the Honey Bee Handicap (gr. III) heroine Thunder Kitten - follows graded scorer Baptize as the second stakes winner by Dynaformer (TrueNicks, SRO) out of a Storm Cat mare. This is a good filly family, and the second dam, Nastique, won four grade I events. She's a half-sister to Dactique (a stakes winner who produced graded stakes winning fillies Transient Trend and Solo Survivor). The third dam, La Fantastique, is a half-sister to Chou Croute, a filly who earned honors as champion sprinter.

The centerpiece of the Royal meeting, the 2 1/2-mile Ascot Gold Cup (Eng-I), was a thrilling race with an historic outcome. Two furlongs from home, three horses were line abreast, with 7-year-old Yeats - seeking his third consecutive victory in the marathon - appearing to be the least likely of the trio to win. In the end, however, a combination of class, heart, and stamina prevailed, and Yeats drew off to win by five lengths.

By Sadler's Wells out of Lyndonville, a daughter of the French Derby (Fr-I) winner Top Ville, Yeats is rated A+ by TrueNicks. The cross has proved to be an outstanding one: from 19 starters it has produced five stakes winners including the Yeats; the exceptional middle-distance performer and good young sire Montjeu; and grade I winner Darazari.

The final black type event of the day, the 10-furlong Hampton Court Stakes for 3-year-olds, went to the improving Collection, a son of the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr0I) victor Peintre Celebre, out of Lasting Chance. A daughter of American Chance, Lasting Chance raced in the U.S., where she won the B.C. Oaks (gr. III), and two other stakes. The pedigree is fundamentally an outcross, although it does combine the similarly-bred Sir Gaylord (whose son, Habitat, is sire of the second dam of Peintre Celebre) and Cure the Blues (sire of American Chance): Sir Gaylord is by Turn-to out of Somethingroyal, and Cure the Blues is by a grandson of Turn-to,and his dam is out of a half-sister to Somethingroyal.

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