Cape superstar fancied to take milers championship
The Highlands Farms’ bred Soft Falling Rain has been installed a 4-1 second favourite, by William Hill, to take top honours in one of Britain’s top 1600m events – the Group One Queen Elizabeth II Stakes sponsored by Qipco.
The colt, who has won eight of his nine outings to date, is the second favourite for the one mile race, behind the 2013 2000 Guineas winner Dawn Approach (2-1).
Other fancied runners for the QE II Stakes include the Group One winners Olympic Glory and Toronado (both 9-2 shots), Arc winner Bago’s half-brother Maxios (6-1), and the brilliant, dual Group One winning gelding Gordon Lord Byron (10-1).
Soft Falling Rain, South Africa’s Equus Champion 2YO Colt of 2012, comes into the race off a devastating, 3.5 length romp in the Group 2 Nayef Joel Stakes at Newmarket last time out.
Trained by Mike de Kock, Soft Falling Rain was a R350 000 buy at the inaugural Cape Premier Yearling Sale (Book 1). He is one of 16 Grade One winners produced by the unraced Danzig horse National Assembly, and is out of the Giant’s Causeway mare Gardener’s Delight.
The colt is owned by Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.
Should he win Saturday’s one mile championship, Soft Falling Rain would join a list of legends. The race has previously won by some of the greatest horses ever seen on the British turf – including Tudor Minstrel, Brigadier Gerard, Kris, Dubai Millennium, and most recently, the unforgettable Frankel.