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Statuette wins the Airlie Stud Stakes at the Curragh
Coolmore Australia shuttler Justify (Scat Daddy) sired his first stakes winner on Sunday when well-bred filly Statuette (2 f ex Immortal Verse by Pivotal) won the Group 2 Airlie Stud Stakes (6f) at the Curragh.
A half-sister to Group 1 winner Tenebrism (Caravaggio), the filly raced along with the leaders early on. Jockey Ryan Moore asked for a step up in pace in the clsoing stages and Statuette came down the rail to win by three quarters of a length with Badb (Footstepsinthesand) in second and Matilda Picotte (Sioux Nation) finished third.
"She's a very big filly and we were only training her three-quarters ready because we had our eye on the last part of the season," said winning trainer Aidan O'Brien.
"With that type of filly if you train them too hard you wouldn't have her at the end of the season when you want her.
"She's 16 2 ½ (hands high), for a two-year-old filly. We were delighted, we were a little bit worried when the ground got soft that she could have got very tired but obviously just her class got her through.
"She travelled lovely and Ryan nursed her, she won lovely in the end and we were very happy.
"She has a beautiful mind, great stride and an unbelievable physique. We think the Justifys are something to look forward to.
"She's a sister to Tenebrism but she'd carry her on her back as she's a massive big powerful filly this one.
"She's probably not as precocious as normal for a filly running at this time of year, but she has so much class she was able to run and do it rather than us making her do it.
"When she was able to do it we didn't like stopping her, but at the same time we weren't chasing her in any way at home."
Trained by O'Brien for the Coolmore partners, Westerberg, and Merribelle Stables, Statuette was bred by Coolmore and Merribelle. She is one of two group winners out of dual Group I winner Immortal Verse (Pivotal), who is also the dam of European Champion two-year-old filly Tenebrism.
Justify's first northern hemisphere-bred crop has now seen two of his eight runners win or place at stakes level with Tahoma stakes placing last weekend. Six of his eight runners have either won or placed in their debuts.
Justify will stand for a fee of $55,000 (inc GST) this spring.