WS Stallions Dominate Finish in Cuddle Stakes

The WS-owned and bred mare Dating went close to a notable feature race double at Trentham on Saturday when she was narrowly beaten in the Gr 3 Cuddle Stakes. The four-year-old had ventured south to Wellington last season to win the Gr 3 Desert Gold Stakes.

There was, however, some consolation in defeat for the Chittick family as the Cuddle winner Floria is a daughter of Savabeel and a Centaine mare. Trained by Stephen McKee, the four-year-old is raced by her breeder Richard Moore and has been a consistent performer with lead-up placings in the Gr.2 Cal Isuzu Stakes, the Gr.3 Eagle Technology Stakes and the Listed Westbury Classic.

Floria was caught three and four wide throughout the race and gamely stuck to her task to score by a head. “She’s taken on the best all the way through so it was good to get one and she’ll definitely go to the Breeders’ Stakes,” McKee said. O’Reilly’s daughter Dating, who had also placed in the Gr 1 Captain Cook Stakes at Trentham before Christmas, challenged for the lead soon after straightening and maintained a strong gallop to the post.

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