GODOLPHIN’S BLUE SILKS have been carried to victory in the 2000 Guineas, the first Classic of the season in Britain, on three occasions but not since 2013 when Dawn Approach landed the 3yos’ mile feature for Jim Bolger.
In the July of that year (2013), Charlie Appleby was appointed a Godolphin trainer and has three chances to win the race for a first time having saddled Pinatubo to finish third last year.
To the surprise of many, William Buick has opted to partner Master Of The Seas, course and distance winner of the Group 3 Craven Stakes just over a fortnight ago. Prior to that, Buick’s mount was second to stablemate Naval Crown in the Listed Meydan Classic.
The latter, under Buick, was second in the 7f Listed Free Handicap on his European return. He will be ridden by Adam Kirby on Saturday with James Doyle aboard the third Appleby contender, One Ruler.
Appleby said: “Heading into the Guineas, I couldn’t be happier with them. One Ruler has been progressing nicely at home, while Master Of The Seas has gone to the races and put the score on the board.
“It wasn’t an easy call for William, who rode Master Of The Seas in the Craven and then sat on One Ruler in a routine gallop at Moulton Paddocks last week.
“William asked some serious questions of Master Of The Seas in his race, and he was pleased with the response. I believe that’s what clinched it.
“Master Of The Seas has taken a proven path to the Guineas, and has kept progressing, but the biggest change in him came after he ran at Meydan. He strengthened noticeably.
“Things have also gone well with One Ruler. He is well in himself, and his work has been pleasing. Kieren Fallon, who has been riding him all winter, took him for a routine gallop on Saturday, and he was pleased. Kieren won the Guineas five times, so it’s great to have a rider with that experience on the team.
“Because of the rearranged fixture list last year due to Covid, we went straight to the Guineas with Pinatubo, which has helped with formulating plans this year.
“We took One Ruler for a gallop at Chelmsford four weeks ago, and he also had a racecourse gallop at the Craven Meeting earlier this month. His prep has gone well, and this is the perfect starting point for his Classic season.”
Meanwhile, Shadwell have supplemented the unbeaten Mutasaabeq after his impressive seasonal debut success in a 7f conditions race at the Craven meeting. A homebred Invincible Spirit colt, he is out of Ghanaati, a 1000 Guineas heroine for Sheikh Hamdan.
The mount of Jim Crowley, Mutasaabeq will bid to emulate his dam at Newmarket after being added to the field on Monday at a cost of £30,000.
Shadwell's racing manager Angus Gold said: "I've heard from Sheikh Hamdan's family and they're keen to see him run so he was supplemented.
"He's come out of his race well and seems to have improved mentally and physically, which is want you want to see. The ability was never the thing, it was whether the Guineas would come too soon.
"It would be extraordinary. Sheikh Hamdan wasn't just a keen racing man. He was passionate about breeding and Ghanaati was one of his favourites. It would be amazing if she could produce a star now he's sadly no longer with us.
"He's inexperienced but at the same time he was visually very impressive the other day and he seems to be settling down mentally. The signs are he's bang up there but whether he's good enough to win a Guineas only Saturday will tell us.
"He's going in the right direction, is very well bred and looks the part so hopefully he'll give a good account of himself. He ran right to the top of the hill last time and Jim said a mile won't be a problem."
With ten previous victories, Aidan O’Brien is the prestigious prize’s most prolific winner and saddles three, Ryan Moore electing to ride Wembley who was edging favouritism on Thursday morning.
In 2004 he landed the race with Camelot, partnered by his son Joseph who relies on Thunder Moon seeking to become the first jockey to subsequently win the race as a trainer.
Three days after Master Of The Seas won the Craven, Chindit and Pat Dobbs landed the 7f Group 3 Greenham Stakes at Newbury. The pair will seek to give trainer Richard Hannon his second 2000 Guineas, a race his father, also Richard, won thrice.