04/22/2017 3:18PM

Dabyah, Barney Roy will contend for spots in two May classics


Dabyah and Barney Roy won Group 3 sprint stakes for 3-year-olds at Newbury Racecourse in England on Saturday to move into contention for starts in May's classic races: the French 1000 Guineas and English 2000 Guineas.

Dabyah, trained by John Gosden, won the $76,800 Dubai Duty Free Stakes for fillies for her first stakes win and first start of 2017. Ridden by Frankie Dettori, Dabyah was the 3-2 favorite and led throughout to win by 1 1/4 lengths over 25-1 Urban Fox.

Dettori suggested to Gosden after the Dubai Duty Free Stakes that Dabyah would be better suited to the potentially softer turf at Deauville, France, for the French 1000 Guineas on May 13 instead of the English 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 7.

The Gosden stable has Daban as a candidate for the English 1000 Guineas. Daban won the Group 3 Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket on Wednesday. Dabyah and Daban are owned by Abdullah Saeed Al Naboodah of the United Arab Emirates.

Dabyah has won three of four starts. She was third in the Group 1 Prix Marcel Boussac at Chantilly, France, last October.

Barney Roy and Dream Castle gave Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin Racing a 1-2 finish in the $76,800 JLT Greenham Stakes for 3-year-old colts and geldings at seven furlongs.

Dream Castle, the 9-4 favorite, set the pace but could not hold off Barney Roy, a 5-2 shot ridden by James Doyle for trainer Richard Hannon Jr. Barney Roy won by two lengths.

Barney Roy and Dream Castle are expected to start in the English 2000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 6.

Barney Roy is unbeaten in two starts, beginning with a maiden race at Haydock Park last September.

Saturday’s richest race in Great Britain, the $275,200 Scottish Grand National steeplechase at Ayr Racecourse, was won for the second consecutive year by Vicente, the 9-1 co-favorite who finished a neck in front of 18-1 Cogry.

The Grand National was run at 3 7/8 miles and drew a field of 30. Vicente started earlier this month in the $1.25 million Grand National at Aintree Racecourse on April 8, but fell at the first fence.