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HRN Original Blog:
Toasting with Andrew Champagne


Older Comments...

Another walk over for conquest Tsunami, very impressive in the Colin stakes
Dead last in an allowance @ Toga
  • Exterminator · Misread that as "Died in an Allowance at Toga"... Thankfully that was not the case. Still sad that the Derby runner-up ran so poorly. · 20 minutes ago
  • SSilence86 via Disqus · Hey Sully! · 10 minutes ago
Taghrooda and Sea The Moon give Sea The Stars a very good chance to have an Arc winner from his first crop. He has been a wonderful stud so far.
  • ILuvTurfRacing · No knock on the colt, but IMO Taghrooda's a cut above Sea The Moon. She's definitely faced and beaten much tougher company than he has to date. I don't think Sea The Moon could've won the King George, let alone in the fashion that Taghrooda did, but TJMO. · 1 hour ago
  • Exterminator · ILuvTurfRacing, I'm going to resist judging who is better until they either face each other or recieve a true challenge. Sea The Moon has certainly faced weaker foes, but he has been so much the best I do not think they are any indicator of his quality. My personal favorite of the two is Sea the Moon, because I love his unique stretch runs. He has been so good at three, I can't wait to see him at four. · 1 hour ago
Taghrooda's win in the G1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes guarantees her a spot in the G1 Breeders Cup Turf in November should connections decide to go that route with the King George being one of the "win and your in" races in Europe for the BC Turf. Even though John Gosden has ran fillies in the BC Turf in the past, I.E., Dar Re Mi & The Fugue, my gut feeling is Sheikh Hamdan won't be shipping Taghrooda any further than to Longchamp in October where the G1 Prix De l'Arc de Triomphe will be her swan song race before sadly being retired to broodmare status. Really a special performance by this filly today at Ascot!!
  • jonquil · Hopefully her younger full-sister, Taqaareed, will be just as good. She's Ezima's 2013 foal. :) · 1 hour ago
In winning the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Taghrooda became only the seventh filly/mare to win the race since 1951. She also joined Dahlia (1973, 1974) and Pawneese (1976) to become the third ever 3 year old filly to win the race, and on top of that she became the third filly to complete a Epsom Oaks-King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes win along with Pawneese and Time Charter (1983). Other past winners are: Aunt Edith (1966), Park Top (1969) and Danedream (2012).
Word is Todd and his team think this is there best 2 year old even tho he hasant run 750k purchase
  • Northport · He has a good name if he ends up being a nice one! · 1 hour ago
  • buds · He might be right, the horse CRUSHED the field. check out the early fractions, and still came home in 12 seconds. Very Nice · 1 hour ago
What a filly!! I mean what a filly!! Vaulted right by Telescope & Mukhadram in the stretch like they were idling in neutral to win the King George!! First 3YO filly to win this race since Pawneese in 1976. This is a very special 3YO filly indeed.
  • jonquil · I was astonished! This is really rare and she had a pretty rotten draw to deal with on top of everything else. Yeah, I was wrong and she proved it effortlessly. A very incredible filly, indeed. I'm even more gutted now that she won't be racing next year. · 4 hours ago
  • Northport · What an awesome performance. Given the cut in weights 3 year old fillies get in the Arc, she could have a real chance at it, although it is shaping up to be a gruelling race as of now. It is unfortunate that she won't be racing at 4, but as other have said if different threads, they don't always come back as strong as they were · 1 hour ago
I wonder if Bayern can carry his speed 9 furlongs?
  • amino998 · K. D. Clark, Edgar, Rosie, Luis and the Trackman will have key imputs into that answer Sunday. · 2 hours ago
next start may be La. Super Derby Sep. 6th
no ONE male horse can beat her!! She is soooooo much stronger....
A wonderful performance, but Pawneese's was truly incredible. She was never the same after her win. Let us hope the same does not happen to Taghrooda.
  • ILuvTurfRacing · @Euro Trash, does Sea The Stars have any offspring currently active that's more talented than this filly? I thought her performance in the Epsom Oaks was awfully good, but this performance was truly special, IMO. As long as it's not bottomless ground she has to be considered a very live shot in this year's Arc. Especially given how fillies & mares have ruled the roost of late in the Arc. · 4 hours ago
  • jonquil · But Pawneese had more runs to her name prior to her King George than Taghrooda did here... · 4 hours ago
Brilliant filly, and what a sire SEA THE STARS has become.
Taghrooda is the new Arc favourite at 7-2 (from 10s) with William Hill.
  • Euro Trash via Disqus · A bit premature to make her a favorite, but she certainly should be strongly backed · 4 hours ago
I've picked this field apart just about every way possible, and foolish though I am, this will be my King George super-fecta: 1st-Telescope 2nd-Taghrooda 3rd-Magician 4th-Eagle Top.
  • Show All 5 Comments
  • jonquil · This is nerve-wracking waiting for the race to start. I like pretty much everyone in the field and it's hard to think of any of them being outside of the top 4. · 4 hours ago
  • Euro Trash via Disqus · Brilliant performance. Three year old fillies of quality are so dangerous with the huge weight advantage they receive. · 4 hours ago
Well, she sure showed me, haha! Taghrooda won the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes impressively!
  • ILuvTurfRacing · I'm not sure what races John Gosden will run Taghrooda in before October, but I'm quite sure the Arc will likely be her swan song since Sheikh Hamdan is retiring her at the end of the season. The King George is a "win and your in" race for the Breeders Cup Turf, and while John Gosden has shown the competitive spirit to run a filly in the BC Turf(Dar Re Mi, The Fugue), I'd very surprised if Sheikh Hamdan lets Taghrooda come stateside. It would be nice to see though. · 4 hours ago
Zambucca a fine Racehorse. Beat a good field in the Group 2 Victory Moon Stakes. International Jockey J Moreira ran second on Astro News with Michael De Kock running third and fourth
Many contrary opinions, starting with Northern Dancer.
Sheikhzayed out battles Secret Gesture and Windhoek in a driving 3-way finish to win the G2 Sky Bet York Stakes at York.
  • jonquil · Y'know, for such a tiny filly, Secret Gesture has a lot of grit and determination to win. It was such a close finish between Sheikhzayedroad and Secret Gesture! Too bad Sharestan didn't run, and Producer just didn't look like he was able to get into the race. · 5 hours ago
Give me 8 or 10-1 on Sharestan in the G2 York Stakes over 10-1/2f and I'll take it all day, every day. His career record to date is 13-7-1-3, but what applies here is the only 2 out of money finishes of Sharestan's career have both been at 12f when 9th behind St Nicholas Abbey in the 2013 Dubai Sheema Classic and 5th behind Telescope last out in the Hardwicke Stakes. Between a mile and 10-1/2f Sharestan has never finished worse than 3rd, and I've always thought him to be a pretty classy horse going back to his earlier days in Ireland when he was still racing for the Aga Khan.
Won the Princess Margaret Juddmonte Stakes to Pastoral Girl in 2nd with Explosive Lady in 3rd!



Meet Andrew Champagne


A native of upstate New York and a graduate of Ithaca College, Andrew Champagne fell in love with horse racing at a very early age on summer trips to Saratoga. His turf writing credits include time spent as a sportswriter, weekly columnist, and handicapper at The Saratogian, a summer working for The Saratoga Special, and "field research" at OTB facilities in Saratoga Springs and his hometown of Kingston. He also spent two years in the athletic communications office at Siena College, and interned with NBC Olympics at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

Andrew moved to Pasadena, Calif., in October of 2013, and now serves as an Associate Producer in HRTV's Digital Media department and Horse Racing Nation's Southern California writer. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewChampagne, and email him at andrewdchampagne@gmail.com.