Globe-trotting campaigner Wigmore Hall (4g High Chaparral x Love and Laughter, by Theatrical) posted his first Grade I success when taking out the Northern Dancer Turf Stakes at Woodbine on Sunday.
Runner-up in last year’s Grade I Arlington Secretariat Stakes, the Michael Bell trained Wigmore Hall has travelled to Dubai and Asia since then and was having his second run back from a break in this mile and a half staying test on turf.
He finished off strongly for Jamie Spencer to win by a neck in a competitive surge to the line.
“He’s very brave,” praised Spencer. “It was a slow pace and an extremely messy race. I was a bit worried, but he beat a group I winner (Poet’s Voice) over a mile in his first start of the year, so he’s got a good turn of foot.”
A winner of six of his 18 starts with prizemoney of $1.3 million, Wigmore Hall made it back to back wins in the race for his sire High Chaparral, whose son Redwood won it last year.
The sixth Group I winner for his sire High Chaparral, Wigmore Hall is the first stakes-winner for his dam Love and Laughter, a half-sister by Theatrical to stakes-winner Kissing the Camera from Group III winner Hoh Dear.
Winner of the Listed Prix Volterra at Chantilly, Kissing the Camera is by champion sire Galileo and is now in Australia at Coolmore where she is due to foal to Fastnet Rock this spring.