Once again, at the turn of the year immature 2 year olds fill their frames overnight and develop into considerably stronger 3 year olds…well that’s what we see on TV! Having read that Spacious had been the subject of a massive bet for the 1000 Guineas (a filly I wrote about here), I started thinking; how many of the outstanding 2 year olds went on to become outstanding 3 year olds? In order to answer this I took a look at the history of the Cartier awards (1991-2007).
The immediate stat to hit me was that only the brilliant George Washington and Divine proportions received the colt and filly of the year awards at 2 and then 3. However, while this is logical, as many 2 year olds have restricted campaigns, what is surprising is the number of colts and fillies that fail to live up to the standard set by their outstanding 2 year old careers.
Only 5 of the 17 fillies to win the 2-year-old award went onto win another group 1 race at 3 or older. Shockingly, 8 of the 17 filly winners failed to win another group race. As for the colts, 7 of the 17 award winners did not win another race after their 2-year-old careers. Why? Some were already well developed and did little growing over the winter? Some were excessively campaigned as 2 year olds with 8 or 9 races taking their toll?
Have New Approach and Natagora been condemned to mediocrity or are the latest Cartier award winners bound for glory?