A delighted James Fanshawe will now consider potential Royal Ascot targets for his late-maturing mare, Captivator, who stuck her neck out and battled on tenaciously to land the listed Snowdrop Fillies Stakes at Kempton Park on April 7, writes Elliot Slater.
A progressive handicapper, who improved from a mark of just 71 at the start of the campaign to end up rated 94 after placing in listed company at Yarmouth in September, Captivator appears to have improved again for another winter.
Despite not getting the best of runs, she came through under Keiren Fallon to hit the front at the furlong pole at Kempton, and then stayed on bravely to deny the much higher-rated, Marco Botti-trained Law of the Range by a short head, the pair pulling three-lengths clear of the favourite, Soorah.
The win will surely see Captivator’s mark move up to around 100, meaning that Fanshawe will have to look at top handicaps or pattern company for the mare, who comes from a family with which he has been associated for nearly two decades, and amongst whom there have been some distinctly useful performers. She joins the 2003 Royal Hunt Cup and Group 2 Falmouth Stakes winner, Macadamia, the Scandinavian-listed winner, Pistachio, and the classy handicapper, Azarole.
It could well be that Fanshawe may view the Royal Hunt Cup over the stiff Ascot mile as a likely target for Captivator, but should he feel she is worth a crack at even better company, the Group2 Windsor Forest Stakes for fillies and mares over the Ascot mile would also seem to be a target within range.
Captivator is clearly getting better with age, and could make a big name for herself in the 2012 season. Fans of racing can share in any potential success that Captivator achieves by taking part in some horse racing betting.