Magical Flies To Fifth Group 1 Victory
Magical (5m Galileo - Halfway To Heaven, by Pivotal) proved she retains all of her ability when running out an impressive winner of the Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday.
Coming into the race with four top-flight victories to her name, it was no surprise to see her sent off favourite, though she was having her first run since winning the Group 1 Champion Stakes in October. Seamie Heffernan kept it simple out in front, extending his advantage from three furlongs out and pushed the bay clear a furlong later. Drawing clear with ease, Magical won by four and a half lengths, as Group 3 winner Cayenne Pepper (Australia) chased her home in second, with another length and three quarters back to Group 1 performer Fleeting (Zoffany) in third.
An elated Seamie Heffernan said after the race, “Magical is a queen. I rode it like a piece of work. She's a push button ride in a Group 1 and you can't ask for more. She's been competing at Group 1 level for a long time and she still has the attitude and the ability. She's as good as I've ridden.”
Bred by Orpendale, Chelston and Wynatt, Magical was completing a treble on the card for Aidan O’Brien, Galileo and owners Mrs John Magnier, Derrick Smith and Michael Tabor. Napa Valley (Galileo) made it two from two when winning the competitive three-year-olds conditions race earlier in the card, while Hudson River (Galileo), the first foal out of top sprinter Mecca’s Angel, made a winning debut in the seven furlong maiden.
Magical also completed a Group 1 double for the Ballydoyle team, following Santiago’s thrilling success in the Irish Derby on Saturday. Sent off favourite under Seamie Heffernan, the bay battled to a narrow win from Tiger Moth (Galileo), with the pair drawing five lengths clear of Dawn Patrol (Galileo) and Order Of Australia (Australia) in a 1-2-3-4 for Ballydoyle.