06/21/2007 11:00PM

Indian Ink reigns in Coronation


Indian Ink took advantage of a mid-afternoon rain squall that softened the ground at Royal Ascot on Friday as she swept past three 1,000 Guineas winners to win the $498,000 Coronation Stakes by six widening lengths.

In what was expected to be a battle between English and Irish 1,000 winner Finsceal Beo, her French 1,000 conqueror Darjina, and undefeated German 1,000 winner Mi Emma, Indian Ink crushed them all with a scintillating turn of foot on a good to soft turf course over which none of her 12 rivals were completely comfortable.

Mi Emma, sent off as the 10-3 co-favorite, plugged on to hold second by a head from the 7-2 Darjina, but co-choice Finsceal Beo, who appeared poised to take the lead approaching the three-sixteenths pole, found nothing when asked by Kevin Manning and faded to finish eighth, 8 1/2olengths behind Indian Ink, who was timed in 1:42.26 for the mile.

Indian Ink started the day as a 25-1 longshot, but when the rains came, so came the money on the Richard Hannon-trained daughter of Indian Ridge, who as 2-year-old had won the $527,000 Watership Down Stud Sales Stakes and the Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes on soft ground. Sent off at 8-1, she settled near the back of the pack under Richard Hughes, improved her position on the wide outside after entering the 2 1/2-furlong stretch, led at the eighth pole, then sped clear.

Hannon mentioned the one-mile Group 1 Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket as Indian Ink's probable next start on July 11, until when he should spend time perfecting his rain dance. Mi Emma and Darjina are likely to meet in the one-mile Group 1 Prix d'Astarte at Deauville on July 29, but trainer Jim Bolger has no immediate plans for Finsceal Beo.

o Boscobel benefited from a front-running ride by Joe Fanning to defeat George Strawbridge's 5-2 favorite Lucarno by a length in the Group 2, $398,000 King Edward VII Stakes. A 3-year-old Halling colt trained by Mark Johnston for Sheikh Mohammed, the 7-1 Boscobel was winning for the fifth time in six starts, two of those on Polytrack. He covered the 1 1/2 miles on good ground in 2:37.13.

o In the Group 3 Albany Stakes at six furlongs for 2-year-old fillies, the Michael Channon-trained Nijoom Dubai scored a 50-1 upset over the Aidan O'Brien-trained 7-4 favorite You'resothrilling by 1 1/4 lengths.

O'Brien gained some consolation when his barn's 7-1 shot Mahler ran off to a 3 1/2-length victory in the two-mile Group 3 Queen's Vase.