Although off the track since his exciting win in the Group 2 Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot last year, Juddmonte homebred Calyx put up a sparkling performance over the course and distance today to take the Group 3 Merriebelle Stable Commonwealth Cup Trial Stakes by four lengths.
The bare form does not appear to be particularly exciting – No Nonsense was the runner-up and Konchek finished another half-length back in third – but the manner in which the colt quickened clear of his rivals and the time he clocked strongly suggest that it is just a matter of when, rather than if, this first-crop son of Kingman (by Invincible Spirit) will win at the highest level.
Timeform rated him 120p for his short juvenile campaign. It would have been interesting to see how he might get on in the Group 1 Qipco 2000 Guineas, but for now at least it seems that this John Gosden-trained bay is a potential sprint star and next month's Group 1 Commonwealth Cup is the obvious target.
Banstead Manor Stud's Kingman, himself a Timeform 134-rated miler, has made an excellent start as a stallion and, in addition to Calyx, his initial crop includes the juvenile stakes winners Look Around, Poetry and Sangarius as well as the Andre Fabre-trained Persian King. That dual Group 3 scorer is set to contest both the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Poulains (French 2000 Guineas) and Group 1 Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby).
Calyx is the fourth foal of Helleborine (by Observatory), a five-length Group 3 Prix d'Aumale scorer who chased home Misty For Me in the Group 1 Prix Marcel Boussac. She is a full-sister to Group 1 Sprint Cup heroine African Rose – who is the dam of Group 3 Princess Margaret Stakes winner Fair Eva (by Frankel) – and she is out of Group 2 Lancashire Oaks third New Orchid (by Quest For Fame), a half-sister to Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes winner Distant Music (by Distant View).
Further back, this is the family of the US champions and multiple Grade 1 stars Vanlandingham (by Cox's Ridge) and Temperence Hill (by Stop The Music).
Sires & Winners