Montjeu posted a Grade I double in North America on Sunday with class mares Sarah Lynx and Miss Keller starring at the international meeting at Woodbine in Canada.
Unheralded mare Sarah Lynx (4m Montjeu x Steel Princess, by Danehill) was the only female in the Grade I Pattinson Canadian International Stakes and produced the best run of her career to surge home late on the inside, before powering through the heavy ground to win the mile and a half contest by four lengths.
She defeated Joshua Tree (4hMontjeu x Madeira Mist, by Grand Lodge) with Treasure Beach (3c Galileo x Honorine, by Mark of Esteem) a gallant third to give Coolmore sires a trifecta in the prestigious event.
In form jockey Christophe Soumillon was aboard the Irish-bred mare, who is trained by John Hammond for her owner Mrs. Robert G. Ehrnooth.
Hammond chose to run in the International over the 10-furlong Grade I E.P. Taylor Stakes for fillies and mares because he believed the 1 1/2-mile distance was better suited to Sarah Lynx’s ability.
Her victory comes with an automatic entry into the Grade I Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Turf at Churchill Downs November 5, although connections are yet to decide it the French-based mare will return.
Sarah Lynx has now won three of 11 starts and more than $1million prizemoney and is the first filly or mare to win the Canadian International since Infamy in 1988.
“For a filly to win like that here you know it is phenomenal, really,” said Kate Bradley, Hammond’s assistant.
“Credit goes to Christophe because he knows the filly very, very well. He’s got great partnership with her and my boss also, John. We are just over the moon.”
A 60,000 guinea purchase from the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale, Sarah Lyynx is the only winner to date for Grade III winning Danehill mare Steel Princess.
Montjeu made it a Grade I double when Miss Keller (5m Montjeu x Ingozi, by Warning) saluted in the E.P Taylor Stakes over a mile and a quarter for fillies and mares.
Owned by Three Chimneys Racing, Lordship Stud & Clodagh McStay and trained by Roger Attfield, Miss Keller was second in this race last year and improved this time around to nail her first Grade I win with a tenacious head victory.
“It’s great,” said Attfield of this year’s result. “This is the last race that I trained this filly to run in, actually, because she is going to the sale in England. She’s been a little bit of a project this year.
“I just haven’t been able to win this damn thing (the E.P. Taylor),” he added “I am so proud of her. It’s a great thrill.”
Miss Keller has won six races and placed five times from 25 starts earning $1.2 million and is from the Warning stakes-winner Ingozi.
Miss Keller and Sarah Linx bring Montjeu’s tally of global Grade I winners to 24.