Carla's Way (Starspangledbanner) wins the Gr.2 Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket

Impressive Group 2 Winner For Starspangledbanner

Carla’s Way (2f Starspangledbanner - Sulaalaat, by New Approach) sustained a strong pace to run out an impressive winner of the Group 2 Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket on Friday.

James Doyle settled Simon and Ed Crisford’s representative in second, chasing a brisk pace set by the leader, with a clear gap back behind her to the rest of the field. Travelling strongly with two furlongs left to race, she led before the final furlong and was ridden out to score by two and a quarter lengths, as the Listed-winning favourite did her best to narrow the gap in third.

Speaking after the race, Ed Crisford said, “They were going quick enough up front, at 11 seconds per furlong. To quicken off that pace takes a good filly and she showed that today. She's an exciting prospect.”

The Rockfel Stakes winner immediately earned an entry at the Breeders’ Cup, on which Crisford commented, “I think Santa Anita will suit this filly well and she likes quick ground so the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies' Turf is a strong possibility. But we need to speak to the owner before we decide on any plans.”

Looking further ahead, he continued, “She has plenty of scope for next year and 100 per cent I think she'll train on. We see her as a 1,000 Guineas filly, but whether she'll get a mile we'll have to see.”

A dominant debut winner in June, Carla’s Way was last seen finishing second in a Group 3, with that winner subsequently following up in a Group 2. Owned by Shaikh Duaij Al Khalifa, the daughter of Starspangledbanner was bought by Stroud Coleman at the Goffs UK Breeze-Up Sale for 350,000gns. She was sold by Grove Stud, who bred the chesnut with David Spratt.