The Aidan O’Brien-trained Coolmore partners-owned dual Classic heroine Hermosa is the early leader in this year’s Cartier Horse Of The Year standings.
Hermosa, on 80 points, holds a significant advantage following impressive victories over a mile in the Group 1 QIPCO 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 5 and the Group 1 Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas at the Curragh on May 26.
The daughter of Galileo could extend the fine recent record of three-year-old fillies crowned Cartier Horse Of The Year, with Treve (2013), Minding (2016) and Enable (2017) all having received the ultimate accolade at the end of their Classic campaigns.
The longstanding and prestigious awards were established in 1991 to reward excellence in horseracing. There are eight equine awards – the Cartier Horse Of The Year, the Cartier Older Horse, the Cartier Sprinter, the Cartier Stayer, the Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt, the Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly, the Cartier Two-Year-Old Colt and the Cartier Two-Year-Old Filly.
Coolmore and Godolphin account for five of the six category leaders so far with Persian King (56 points) leading the battle for the Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt Award following two victories over a mile at Longchamp, France, including a length success in the mile French Classic, the Group 1 Emirates Poule d’Essai des Poulains on May 12.
The Godolphin colt, trained by Andre Fabre, looks set to revert to a mile after coming home second to Sottsass (32 points) over an extended 10 furlongs in another French Classic, the Group 1 QIPCO Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly on June 2.
Both could face stern challenges from the Coolmore Classic duo of Group 1 Investec Derby scorer Anthony Van Dyck (48 points) and Magna Grecia (48 points), winner of the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 4.
The Charlie Hills-trained Phoenix Of Spain (32 points) is also a leading early-season Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt contender, having won the Group 1 Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas, at The Curragh on May 25th.
Hermosa’s early challengers for the Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly Award include Anapurna (48 points), winner of the Group 1 Investec Oaks at Epsom on May 31, and Godolphin’s Castle Lady (40 points), successful in the Group 1 Emirates Poule d’Essai des Pouliches.
Ballydoyle’s four-year-old filly Magical (56 points) leads the race to be crowned Cartier Older Horse following an effortless success in the Group 1 Tattersalls Gold Cup at The Curragh.
Her nearest pursuers are Godolphin’s Dream Castle (42 points), victorious in the Group 1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan in March, plus Group 1 winners this season Defoe (40 points), winner of the Group 1 Investec Coronation Cup at Epsom, and Zabeel Prince (40 points), victor of the Group 1 Prix d’Ispahan at Longchamp.
Blue Point (42 points) sets the early pace in the Cartier Sprinter category with three wins including the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint at Meydan, while Stradivarius (16 points), last year’s Gold Cup winner, leads the race for the Cartier Stayer crown.