Gainesway grad Hawkbill soars in Coral Eclipse

Kitten’s Joy colt takes Group 1 over The Gurkha

Hawkbill gets first Group 1 in Coral Eclipse
Sandown Park

Hawkbill’s stellar stretch run carried the 3-year-old colt to victory in the July 2 Coral Eclipse S. (G1) at Sandown racecourse in Great Britain, the sixth straight win for the Gainesway sales grad (VIDEO).

In his first test against older horses, Hawkbill came out of the gate cleanly under William Buick and established himself clearly in second behind Countermeasure, with even-money The Gurkha not far behind in third.

The running order changed little for the first mile, when the field bunched up quickly. Hawkbill went to the front as Countermeasure weakened, with The Gurkha coming up on even terms for the lead. The Gurkha’s steadfast effort was never enough to get to the lead, and Hawkbill scored by a half-length for his first Group 1 victory.

“He goes on the ground very well and the future is very bright for him,” Buick said. “His demeanor has changed a lot this year and he has grown up mentally and physically.”

“He’s a horse that has improved and improved and the sky is the limit for him,” said John Ferguson, racing manager for owner Godolphin Stable. “I think it’s going to be a really enjoyable time now thinking where to go. Hopefully, His Highness will be back for the July Meeting and we can all sit down and have a think about where to go. There’s no hurry and the horse has a great future in front of him.”

Hawkbill improved his record to 6-0-1 in eight starts and has now earned $520,021. Ferguson was the winning bidder for the Gainesway-consigned colt, going to $350,000 at the 2014 Keeneland September yearling sale.