Unforgotten delivered an impressive win in the Gr.2 Chelmsford Stakes (Lisa Grimm)
Talk about living up to your name. Anyone trackside at Royal Randwick on Saturday is unlikely to forget the run of Unforgotten in the Group Two Bisley Workwear Chelmsford Stakes over 1600m.
With less than 300m to go, the 4YO mare was all geared up with no place to go as champion jockey, Hugh Bowman, attempted to weave a passage around Prized Icon and Classic Uniform.
Once in the clear though, the Fastnet Rock millionaire surged to the lead and really stamped her authority on the race, winning with over a length to spare.
It was the work of sheer class and its mind boggling to think Waller has one at home that’s even better … Winx.
(The Chelmsford has certainly provided plenty of theatre with its most recent renewals: it was in last year’s Chelmsford that Winx almost had the race stolen from her courtesy of a bold front running display by Red Excitement).
Indeed, it’s almost impossible these days to have a conversation involving the powerful Waller stable without invoking the name of the world’s best racehorse.
Matter of fact, shortly after the initial shock of Unforgotten’s amazing escape, the topic quickly swung to how the 2018 Chelmsford winner would manage to ‘avoid’ her illustrious stablemate for the remainder of the spring.
After racing twice as a juvenile without a win, Unforgotten peeled off three straight victories last spring, then resumed in the autumn with a last of 11 in the Group Two Surround Stakes, before going on to capture the Group Two Phar Lap and finish second in the Group One Vinery Stud Stakes.
Unforgotten would ultimately sign off her three year old season with an outstanding win in the Group One ATC Oaks in April.
Like practically every runner in the Group One Winx Stakes two weeks ago, Unforgotten was forgotten about as she lined up against the all-conquering Winx, eventually finishing sixth, but the run had clearly primed her for the Chelmsford and she has now won six of her 11 starts (with two seconds) for $1,242,770 in stakes.
“She (Unforgotten) is very special and showed that in the autumn,” Waller enthused. “She won’t be taking on Winx from here on in, I can tell you that.
“I could have gone Epsom and Cox Plate with her bar for Winx.
“The ($5 million Group One) Caulfield Cup (over 2400m on 20 October) might be the race, we’ll just see where she fits in and where the weights settle.”
Similarly, Bowman was mightily impressed with Unforgotten’s win by adding: “the world is her oyster. I wouldn’t imagine she would be beating Winx any time soon but there are plenty of nice races for her.”
A daughter of Champion Sire, Fastnet Rock, Unforgotten is out of the Galileo mare, Memories of You, who has three winners from as many to race, including the stakes placed, Special Memories and is a half sister to four stakes winners in Europe.
Bred at Coolmore by Roncon, Unforgotten was purchased by leading agent, Guy Mulcaster, for NZ$360,000 as a yearling on behalf of Waller, who remains a part-owner, along with some other heavy hitters including Mystery Downs’ Francis and Christine Cook and Bruce Mathieson.
“We’ve been buying for the same, core group for the past six or so years,” Mulcaster explains. “One of the first horses we purchased on their behalf was (4-time Group One winner) Preferment.
“We usually purchase around four to six yearlings for them annually and while some are targeted at 2YO racing, most of the ones we buy are more your 3YO/Classic type.
“That year (2016) we also purchased (Group One Queensland Oaks runnerup) Another Dollar and (multiple city winner) Savacool for the group, but Unforgotten is clearly a class above.
“She was a lovely type as a yearling and we were also attracted by the Fastnet Rock/Galileo cross … there were three with that cross in the sale and, although NZ$360,000 isn’t exactly cheap, she was the least expensive of the three.”
Incredibly, the Fastnet Rock/Galileo cross has produced 50 winners from 62 runners (81%), with 16 stakes winners (26%) – seven of those at Group One level (11%), including Magicool and Age of Fire.
Memories of You, meanwhile, has a yearling colt by No Nay Never, is currently in foal to Air Force Blue and, not surprisingly, will be sent to Fastnet Rock again this spring.