Feature Story

Goodwood on the agenda for Elmalka

Goodwood on the agenda for Elmalka Jun 28, 2024

By Sam Turner - 

Connections of Elmalka, dramatic winner of the 1000 Guineas in the colours of Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, are contemplating a new trip for the daughter of Kingman following her creditable effort at Royal Ascot.

The Classic heroine was an honourable fourth in the G1 Coronation Stakes at the royal meeting, staying on gamely in the straight following a sluggish start.

Elmalka was beaten less than four lengths by winner Porta Fortuna in the fillies feature and trainer Roger Varian believes there may be more improvement to come once his filly steps up in distance later this summer.

“I was pleased with her, at the time I thought she ran well and when I watched the race again, I thought she performed very well,” Varian told the Nick Luck Daily Podcast.

“I thought she was a bit tardy from the gates and, on the round mile, she probably wasn’t able to get the track position we’d have liked to have got. I don’t think they went overly quick, and she was having to make up ground on very good fillies on fast ground and she just wasn’t able to do it.

“I think she performed well enough to cement herself as a top filly and to say that the Guineas wasn’t a flash in the pan.

“It didn’t quite work out at Ascot as it did at Newmarket, but we have first-class options with her, and it isn’t beyond question that we might step her up to 10 furlongs, be it next time or in the future.

“Ascot was a touch frustrating, but I don’t think it diminished what she did at Newmarket, and I think she shaped like a very, very good filly.

“I think the Nassau (Goodwood) is more likely than the Falmouth Stakes, but we are only a week after at Ascot and I need to have a conversation with connections and check we are all on the same page, but I think stepping up to 10 furlongs is what we’ll consider now.”