Jim Crowley: Hopefully we’ve a real good one on our hands
Jockey and Coral ambassador Jim Crowley reflects on Mostahdaf’s big win and discusses the chances of his two rides at Royal Ascot on Thursday.
It was a fantastic run from Mostahdaf to win the Prince of Wales’s Stakes – John and Thady Gosden have done a fantastic job with him. He was bouncing coming into the race and a mile and a quarter on fast ground was ideal.
It’s great for Sheikha Hissa, who is here with her family. We’ve always held him in high regard and he’s by Frankel, so he’s probably only just coming to himself right now.
I’d sat on Al Asifah at home prior to her debut run and she’d given me a lovely feel, so even though I was riding at Sandown when she made her debut at Haydock, it wasn’t a surprise to see her win so well. I didn’t then sit on her after Haydock, but was obviously looking forward to riding her at Goodwood, where she really couldn’t have been any more impressive.
Both those wins have been over 10 furlongs on quick ground, but she’s bred to get this mile and a half trip and she gives me the feel of a filly who will stay without any problems, she ran all the way through the line at Goodwood.
Although she’s only run twice and her last win was in Listed company, we could have stepped her straight into Group One company, such was the impression she made at Goodwood, but the Irish Oaks is a few weeks away and she was raring to go again, so it made sense to supplement her for this prestigious Group 2.
Yep, she is good! 🚀
Al Asifah completely outclasses her rivals in the Listed @BritishEBF Agnes Keyser Fillies' Stakes and marks herself down as a filly that will surely be competing at the highest level sooner rather than later.@ShadwellStud | @JimCrowley1978 pic.twitter.com/ulMGqGnyXm
— Racing TV (@RacingTV) June 11, 2023
Although I was able to give her the easiest race I could at Goodwood, she is backing up quite quickly here, so we won’t know exactly how much that took out of her, but all the signs are she came out of it really well.
The other slight question mark is the field size and her draw of 13. A field of 19 is unusually big for this race, and we are drawn quite wide, so I’d probably look to give her a bit of time to get settled, and then work our way into the race.
She’s in the best of hands, and was given plenty of time to mature, not running her as a two-year-old, and being a Shadwell homebred makes it all even more special for Sheikha Hissa and the team.
Hopefully we’ve a real good one on our hands, and another winner at this meeting is what we’re all aiming for. However, whilst we’re expecting a big run here, I’d say whatever she does at three, she’d be even better if kept in training next year, she really is that exciting.
I rode this fellow a couple of times last year, and his fourth at Doncaster to the subsequent Derby winner was a decent run. He ran well on his first start as a three-year-old, but was well beaten in the Dante last time, so he’ll have a hood on him here and that will hopefully help him settle better. He’s clearly got ability and, if he settles, could outrun his odds.