Umm Kulthum puts down early marker for sprint honours | Racing News

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Umm Kulthum got her season off to the best possible start when winning the Betfair-sponsored British EBF Kilvington Stakes at Newmarket.

The Richard Fahey-trained four-year-old had her last campaign cut short by a setback so she is making up for lost time.

She had, though, shown some smart form in her younger days, finishing third to Alcohol Free in the Cheveley Park Stakes at two and being beaten only a length by Rohaan in the Sandy Lane when last seen.

She was sent off at 100-30 in the Listed contest, largely due to the fact the Simon and Ed Crisford’s Flotus lined up in this in preference to the 1000 Guineas and she was a hot favourite to confirm her second-place finish in the Cheveley Park.

Flotus was soon sending out distress signals, however, and as Christophe Soumillon moved Umm Kulthum into contention, she only had Tenaya Canyon to worry about and she saw off Ed Walker’s filly by a neck.

Fahey said: “She’s always been a smart filly and last year was frustrating as it wasn’t a major problem but enough to keep her off and we just ran out of time.

“She’d been working well but when they’ve had a problem you are always minding them. It’s only the last couple of weeks she’d come to herself.

“She’s in the York race (1895 Duke of York) and I was keen to get a run into her before that. This was a great race for her, early season against fillies only.

“York will tell us where we go after that. She’s got an entry in the (Platinum) Jubilee at Ascot so we’ll see how we go.”

Paddy Power cut the winner to 25-1 from 33-1 for the Ascot race.

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