07/02/2017 3:05PM

Nezwaah earns first Group 1 win with Ireland's Pretty Polly Stakes


Nezwaah won the first Group 1 race of her career in Sunday’s $256,792 Pretty Polly Stakes for fillies and mares at 1 1/4 miles on turf, beating a field that included Zhukova, the winner of the Grade 1 Man o’ War Stakes at Belmont Park on May 13.

Ridden by Andrea Atzeni, Nezwaah (13-2) closed from the back of a field of 10 to win by 3 1/4 lengths over 6-1 Rain Goddess, one of two fillies in the field trained by Aidan O’Brien. Turret Rocks, a 25-1 outsider, finished third, a head in front of Zhukova, in the race held at the Curragh in Ireland.

Trained by Dermot Weld, Zhukova took the lead with a quarter-mile remaining, but faded in the final furlong. Journey, the 15-8 favorite, was a quiet 10th in her first start since a fifth against males in the Group 1 Coronation Cup at Epsom on June 2.

Nezwaah, a 4-year-old filly by Dubawi, is owned by Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum and trained by Roger Varian. The Pretty Polly Stakes was her ninth start.

Although Nezwaah is nominated for the Grade 1 Beverly D Stakes at Arlington Park on Aug. 12, Varian said she is likely to run in the Group 1 Nassau Stakes at Goodwood Racecourse in England on Aug. 3.

There were three Group 1 races in Europe on Sunday.

Zarak won the $456,520 Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud for older horses at 1 1/2 miles on turf in Paris to take a more prominent role in the future-book market for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Chantilly Racecourse on Oct. 1.

Windstoss won the $741,845 Germany Derby at Hamburg against a field of 18, his first win in a Group 1 race.

Zarak is a 16-1 chance with British bookmaker Coral, well behind Almanzor, the current 5-1 favorite.

Trained by Alain de Royer-Dupre, Zarak won his first Group 1 in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud, his seventh appearance in a race at the highest level. Zarak was second in the Group 1 French Derby in 2016 and second in the Group 1 Prix Ganay in May.

Ridden by Christophe Soumillon, Zarak (9-2) closed from the back of a field of 10 with a wide rally to win by three-quarters of a length over 3-1 favorite Silverwave. Armande, a 9-1 shot who won a Group 2 at Saint-Cloud in May, finished third.

The longshot Doha Dream did not finish after unseating jockey Gregory Benoist in early stretch. Doha Dream ran freely at the back of the field for the rest of the race. Benoist took off his remaining rides.

Zarak is owned by breeder The Aga Khan. By Dubawi, Zarak is out of Zarkava, who was undefeated in seven starts. She won her final start in the 2008 Arc de Triomphe.

Windstoss (13-2) won the German Derby at 1 1/2 miles on turf by a length over 5-1 Enjoy Vijay. Windstoss, who was ridden by Maxim Pecheur, was one of seven runners in the field of 18 trained by Markus Klug.

The German Derby was the first Group 1 appearance for Windstoss, who won a minor stakes in Dusseldorf in April and was second in the Group 2 Oppenheim-Union-Rennen in Cologne on June 11.

Windstoss is by Shirocco, the winner of the 2005 Breeders’ Cup Turf at Belmont Park.

Wings of Eagles retired

Wings of Eagles, the upset winner of the English Derby on June 3, has been retired, trainer Aidan O’Brien told the European press on Sunday.

Wings of Eagles was diagnosed with a sesamoid injury in his left foreleg after finishing third in the Irish Derby at The Curragh on Saturday.

Wings of Eagles, by Pour Moi, won 2 of 7 starts for the Coolmore Stud team of Derrick Smith, Michael Tabor, and Sue Magnier. Wings of Eagles is scheduled to undergo surgery Monday to stabilize the leg, O’Brien said.