Raining classics for Swettenham Stud

Winning three classics in three days was no more than wishful thinking for Swettenham Stud leading into the weekend.

But the Sangster family kept the dream alive when Dancing Rain defied the odds to win the G1 English Oaks on Friday.

And the remaining legs are more than winnable with Fillydelphia (Queensland Oaks) and Roderic O’Connor (French Derby).

Dancing Rain (3f Danehill Dancer – Rain Flower by Indian Ridge) won the English Oaks under a clinical front-running ride from Johnny Murtagh.  She defeated Coolmore filly Wonder Of Wonders (Kingmambo) pulling away by three-quarters of a length.

Dancing Rain started at $21 despite encouraging form leading up to the classic.  She won the Robert Sangster Memorial first-up at Newbury in April and followed up with a close second to Izzi Top (Pivotal) in the LR Swettenham Stud Fillies’ Trial Stakes back at Newbury on May 13.

The William Haggis trained filly turned the tables on Izzi Top who was beaten over four lengths into third place at Epsom.  

Dancing Rain is the fourth Oaks winner for Coolmore sire Danehill Dancer following Anna Pavlova (Lancashire Oaks), Contredanse (Oaks d’Italia) and Arapaho Miss (VRC Oaks).

She cost 200,000 euros at the 2009 Goffs Orby yearling sale.  Swettenham bred her from a mare with links to the Sangster family going back to 1992 English Derby winner Dr Devious.

Adam Sangster’s Australian based Swettenham operation will be represented by Fillydelphia in the Queensland Oaks on Saturday.  She is a daughter of Swettenham resident Bianconi and raced into contention for the classic after defeating the colts in the G3 Rough Habit Plate last month.

Swettenham and Coolmore will team up with Roderic O’Connor for the third leg in the G1 French Derby on Sunday.  The Sangsters bred the Galileo colt and race him in partnership with Coolmore’s Susan Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith.

Roderic O’Connor is a last start winner of the G1 Irish 2000 Guineas and on a previous trip across the English Channel was a G1 winner of the Criterium International at Saint-Cloud.