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St Leger 2016: Since its first running in 1776, a total of 42 fillies have landed the final Classic, although only seven of them have triumphed since the Second World War.
The first St Leger went to a filly, Allabaculia, and some great female performers have since graced the Doncaster winner’s enclosure including Sceptre in 1902 and Pretty Polly two years later.
The seven post-War winners were Meld (1955), bookmaker William Hill’s Cantelo (1959), the Queen’s Dunfermline (1977), Sun Princess (1983), the last fillies’ Triple Crown winner Oh So Sharp (1985) and User Friendly (1992) and Simple Verse (2015). Of the septet, all bar Simple Verse (did not run at Epsom Downs) and Cantelo (who was second at Epsom) had previously won the Oaks.
Diminuendo, also an Oaks winner, was only thwarted by a length as Minster Son outstayed the filly close home in 1988, while Ramruma, the Epsom heroine in 1999, had to settle for second behind Mutafaweq three months later at Doncaster. In 2008, Look Here took third behind Conduit after her Epsom success while Snow Fairy, the 2010 Oaks heroine, appeared not to stay when fourth to Arctic Cosmos.
In 2013, Talent continued the good record of Oaks winners when finding only Leading Light a length and a quarter too strong. Other placed fillies include Untold, who was third to Moon Madness in 1986, Roseate Tern who finished second to Michelozzo at Ayr in 1989, Hellenic who was runner-up to Snurge in 1990, the 1999 second High And Low, Quiff, who found only Rule Of Law too strong in 2004, and Unsung Heroine who finished second behind Conduit in 2008.
Simple Verse, supplemented at the cost of £50,000, finished first past the post in 2015 but was controversially disqualified for causing interference to head runner-up Bondi Beach on the day. Trained by Ralph Beckett for Qatar Racing Limited, she was subsequently reinstated on appeal. She went on to win the Group One QIPCO British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes over 12 furlongs at Ascot the following month.
WINNING FILLIES IN THE LADBROKES ST LEGER (SINCE 1900)
Year Winning Filly Previous Classic performances
2015 Simple Verse (main picture)
1992 User Friendly won Oaks
1985 Oh So Sharp won 1,000 Guineas and Oaks
1983 Sun Princess won Oaks
1977 Dunfermline won Oaks
1959 Cantelo 2nd Oaks
1955 Meld won 1,000 Guineas and Oaks
1943 Herringbone won 1,000 Guineas
1942 Sun Chariot won 1,000 Guineas and Oaks
1927 Book Law 2nd in 1,000 Guineas and Oaks
1923 Tranquil won 1,000 Guineas
1904 Pretty Polly won 1,000 Guineas, Oaks
1902 Sceptre won 1,000 Guineas, 2,000 Guineas, Oaks
FILLIES IN THE LADBROKES ST LEGER (SINCE 1989)
Year Filly Position
2015 SIMPLE VERSE WON
2013 Talent 2nd
2011 Blue Bunting 6th; Rumh 9th
2010 Snow Fairy 4th
2008 Unsung Heroine 2nd; Look Here 3rd
**2006 Mont Etoile 8th
2004 Quiff 2nd
2003 Moments Of Joy 5th; Summitville 11th
2000 Littlepacepaddocks 8th
1999 Ramruma 2nd; Noushkey 6th
1998 High And Low 2nd
1997 Book At Bedtime 4th
1995 Jural 10th
1992 USER FRIENDL Y WON
1990 Hellenic 2nd
*1989 Roseate Tern 3rd
*Run at Ayr, **Run at York
Karen can usually be found glued to her computer or at the stables. Having edited several national magazines she co-founded Eclipse Magazine in 2008 after realising that many of her friends were nervous about going racing due to lack of information – what to wear, how to bet etc.
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