05/02/2008 12:00AM

Natagora tries to stay a mile


French invader Natagora will pit her speed against a fast-improving Infallible in the 195th running of the 1000 Guineas Stakes at Newmarket on Sunday when 15 fillies contest the $696,000 classic mile.

While questions linger about Natagora's ability to stay a mile, there are no doubts about her quickness. Last summer she set track records at Maisons-Laffitte when beating colts in both the five-furlong Group 3 Prix du Bois and the 5 1/2-furlong Group 2 Prix Robert Papin. She concluded her juvenile campaign with a reconnaissance trip to Newmarket, winning the six-furlong Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes.

Trainer Pascal Bary stepped her up to seven furlongs for her seasonal debut in Maisons-Laffitte's listed Prix Imprudence and the result was positive. Rated just off the pace, Natagora recorded a convincing 1 1/2-length victory.

By the Sunday Silence stallion Divine Light, himself a one-mile listed winner who was Grade 3-placed at 1 1/4 miles in Japan, Natagora hails from a female family that produced French Oaks winner Resless Kara, so there are reasons to believe she will stay the Guineas trip. Christophe Lemaire flies in for the ride.

Infallible is an unbeaten Pivotal filly who won Newmarket's seven-furlong Nell Gwyn Stakes on April 16 as if it were second nature. The John Gosden trainee drew clear by 3 1/2 lengths in that Group 3 Guineas trial in just her second career outing and should improve for the effort. She will be ridden by Jimmy Fortune.

Muthabara extended her record to 3 for 3 in the seven-furlong Group 3 Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury on April 19, but trainer John Dunlop said that she returned from the gallops on Friday morning with a minor foot bruise. She is, however, expected to take her place in the Guineas lineup.

One filly who will stay the trip is the unbeaten Spacious. The winner in September of the one-mile Group 2 May Hill Stakes at Doncaster, she will be making her first start of the year.

Aidan O'Brien saddles Savethisdanceforme off a sharp second in a Group 3 mile at the Curragh, while Jim Bolger, who won last year's 1000 Guineas with Finsceal Beo, has Group 1 juvenile winner Saoirse Abu and Goffs Fillies Million winner Lush Lashes.