Cafe Pharoah Wins G3 Unicorn Stakes
It’s been a big few days for Triple Crown hero American Pharoah with four stakes horses in four days, the most recent coming in Japan with undefeated colt Café Pharoah (3c American Pharoah x Mary's Follies, by More Than Ready) winning the Group III Unicorn Stakes (1600m) by five easy lengths and setting a new stakes record in the process (1:34.90).
Trained by Noriyuki Hori and ridden by Australian jockey Damian Lane, Café Pharoah drew the outside, but worked forward to a stalking position and powered clear to win as he pleased with ears pricked.
A last start winner of the Listed Hyacinth Stakes, Café Pharoah has won three from three and entered the Unicorn leading the Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby with 30 points, earning another 40 with the victory.
One race remains in the series, which was expanded from four races to six when the Kentucky Derby was rescheduled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Japan Dirt Derby July 8 at Oi Racecourse also offers 40 points to the winner, but none of his competitors can overcome Cafe Pharoah's 70-point total even with a win in that event.
The U.S.-bred was purchased by Narvick International for $475,000 from Eddie Woods at the OBS March 2-Year-Old Sale last year after being bred by Paul Pompa Jr.
A half-brother to US Group winners Regal Glory and Night Prowler, Café Pharoah is one of seven stakes-winner for his sire and is from good producing Group II winner Mary’s Follies, a daughter of champion sire More than Ready.
Australian breeders will find it interesting that American Pharoah has now had two runners from daughters of More than Ready with both being stakes-winners, the other being his Group II Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint winner Four Wheel Drive.
American Pharoah returns to Australia this spring at a fee of $55,000