Sea Of Class showed a superb turn of foot to come from last to first and gain an emphatic victory in the Darley Yorkshire Oaks at York.
Winner of the Irish Oaks on her previous start, the 7-4 favourite was even more impressive this time as she swept by a quality field under James Doyle, to give Yorkshire-born, Newmarket-based trainer William Haggas the perfect 58th birthday present.
Laurens was smartly out of the stalls, but was soon headed by Magic Wand, with Aidan O’Brien’s other runners Bye Bye Baby and Flattering close up.
Coronet and Eziyra made a forward move in the straight – but the QIPCO British Champions Series contest was over as soon as Sea Of Class was invited to engage top gear.
Taking several lengths out of the field in a matter of strides, Sea Of Class strode clear to score by two and a quarter lengths. Coronet was second with Eziyra another length away.
Haggas said: “You always hope they are going to do something like that, but she really was impressive. She was the best of the lot.
“He (Doyle) was coming a bit early but when he said, ‘Go’, she really picked up. She’s got a great turn of foot and she’s a strong traveller.
“She’s not in the Arc yet and I stress it is a ‘yet’. There is a lot of water to pass under the bridge, but I imagine Mrs Tsui will be keen to pay the supplementary fee.
“The plan is to keep her in training next season, but if she won everything this year then it might be different.”
Reflecting further on the manner of the victory, Haggas said: “It’s a front-runners’ track here, but she was devastating.
“She didn’t half pick up when he asked her. I thought she looked better today in the paddock. I thought at the Curragh you could see every rib. You could see a couple today. She’s doing really well, this filly.
“She’s not been the easiest. She’s a bit of a tail swisher, but she stands as still as a rock to be saddled and is as cool as a cucumber. She’s a very good filly and we’ve a lot to look forward to.”