Alice Springs (horse)

Alice Springs (foaled 4 May 2013) is an Irish Thoroughbred racehorse. As a two-year-old in 2015 she failed to win a group race but showed consistently high-class form, winning a valuable sales race, finishing second in the Silver Flash Stakes and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, third in the Moyglare Stud Stakes and fourth in the Cheveley Park Stakes. In the following year she was beaten in her first four races but finished third in both the 1000 Guineas and the Coronation Stakes. She then won three Group One races in her next four starts taking the Falmouth Stakes, Matron Stakes and Sun Chariot Stakes.

Alice Springs
Alice Springs at the 2016 Breeders' Cup
GrandsireSadler's Wells
DamsireDanehill Dancer
Foaled4 May 2013[1]
BreederLynch-Bages & Longfield Stud
OwnerSusan Magnier, Michael Tabor & Derrick Smith
TrainerAidan O'Brien
Record17: 5-3-4
Major wins
Tattersalls Millions 2yo Fillies' Trophy (2015)
Falmouth Stakes (2016)
Matron Stakes (2016)
Sun Chariot Stakes (2016)


Alice Springs is chestnut mare with a white blaze and four white socks bred in Ireland by Lynch-Bages & Longfield Stud. She was sired by Galileo, who won the Derby, Irish Derby and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes in 2001. Galileo is now one of the world's leading stallions and has been champion sire of Great Britain and Ireland five times. His other progeny include Cape Blanco, Frankel, Found, Nathaniel, New Approach, Rip Van Winkle, Ruler of the World and Minding.[2] Alice Springs's dam Aleagueoftheirown showed limited racing ability, winning one race from twelve starts between 2006 and 2009.[3] She was a granddaughter of Optimistic Lass, who won the Nassau Stakes in 1984[4] and was the female-line ancestor of Golden Opinion and the Irish 1,000 Guineas winner Samitar.[5]

As a yearling Alice Springs was offered for sale at Tattersalls in October 2014 and was bought for 550,000 guineas by Michael Magnier on behalf of his father, John Magnier's Coolmore Stud organisation.[6] She was sent into training with Aidan O'Brien at Ballydoyle. Like many Coolmore horses, the official details of her ownership have changed from race to race: she has sometimes been listed as being the property of Susan Magnier., whilst on other occasions she has been described as being owned by a partnership of Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith.

Racing careerEdit

2015: two-year-old seasonEdit

Alice Springs made her racecourse debut in a seven furlong maiden race at the Curragh on 26 June in which she was ridden by Seamie Heffernan and started the 6/4 favourite against eleven other fillies. She took the lead in the final furlong and went clear to win "going away" by two and a half lengths from the Jim Bolger-trained Siamsaiocht.[7] She was immediately moved up to Group Three class and started favourite for the Silver Flash Stakes over the same distance at Leopardstown Racecourse in July but was beaten one and a quarter lengths by the Dermot Weld-trained Tanaza. In August at the Curragh she was one of three Ballydoyle runners to contest the Group Two Debutante Stakes and finished fifth behind her stablemates Ballydoyle and Minding.

On 13 September Alice Springs was moved up to Group One level for the Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh and finished third beaten three quarters of a length and half a length by Minding and Ballydoyle. Two weeks later she was sent to England and dropped in distance to contest the Group One Cheveley Park Stakes over six furlongs at Newmarket Racecourse. Ridden by Ryan Moore she kept on well in the closing stages and finished fourth, one and a half lengths behind the winner Lumiere. Seven days later she returned to Newmarket for the Tattersalls Millions 2yo Fillies' Trophy, a race restricted to fillies sold at Tattersalls. Ridden by Moore she started 2/5 favourite with the best-fancied of her eleven opponents being her fellow Irish raider Clear Skies. After tracking the leaders she took the lead approaching the final furlong and drew away to win "comfortably" by four lengths.[8]

On her final appearance of the season Alice Springs was sent to the United States and started 7/4 favourite for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Keeneland Racecourse on 30 October. After starting slowly she squeezed through a gap on the rail to make her challenge in the final furlong but was beaten three quarters of a length into second by Catch A Glimpse.[9]

2016: three-year-old seasonEdit


On her three-year-old debut Alice Springs started favourite for the Leopardstown 1,000 Guineas Trial Stakes on heavy ground on 10 April but never looked likely to win and finished third behind Jet Setting and Now Or Never. On 1 May she contested the 203rd running of the 1000 Guineas over the Rowley mile at Newmarket in which she started a 16/1 outsider and finished third of the sixteen runners behind Minding and Ballydoyle. Two weeks after her run in the Newmarket classic she started at odds of 3/1 in the French equivalent, the Poule d'Essai des Pouliches over 1600 metres at Deauville Racecourse but faded in the closing stages and finished seventh behind La Cressonniere.


On 17 June Alice Springs was back in England for the Group One Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot and produced a much better effort. After racing towards the rear of the field and then being repeatedly obstructed as Moore attempted to obtain a clear run, she finished strongly and finished third behind Qemah and Nemoralia, with Jet Setting, Tanaza and Now Or Never among the beaten horses. On her next appearance Alice Springs was matched against older fillies and mares for the first time in the Group One Falmouth Stakes over one mile at Newmarket's July course. She started the 5/2 second favouriter behind the French four-year-old Usherette (Duke of Cambridge Stakes), whilst the best-fancied of the five runners was the five-year-old mare Amazing Maria who had won the race in 2015. She raced in third place behind the outsiders Very Special and Irish Rookie before taking the lead a furlong out. She stayed on well despite drifting to the right in the closing stages to win by two and a quarter lengths and a nose from Very Special and Always Smile in a new track record time of 1.34.24.[10] After the race Ryan Moore said "She’s definitely improving. The trainer said that beforehand and he’s usually right. I was in front earlier than I would have liked but the way the race was run I had no choice".[11]

At the end of July Alice Springs returned to Deauville and started fovourite for the Group One Prix Rothschild. Her second visit to France turned out to be another disappointment as she finished eight of the ten runners behind Qemah after being eased down by Moore the last 200 metres when her winning chance had gone.


Alice Sprints at the 2016 Breeders' Cup

On 10 September she made her first appearance in her native country for five months when she met Qemah for the third time in the Group One Matron Stakes over a mile at Leopardstown. Qemah started favourite ahead of the undefeated British filly Persuasive with Alice Springs the 5/1 third choice in the betting in an eight-runner field which also included Jet Setting, Now Or Never and the German 1,000 Guineas winner Hawksmoor. Moore restrained the filly and was still in last place with two furlongs to run, but Alice Springs produced a strong run on the outside, took the lead 150 yards from the finish and drew clear to win by three and a quarter lengths from Persuasive.[12] After the race O'Brien said "It was a bit of a disaster in France. She went and it was shifty, patchy ground in Deauville. Ryan knew she wasn't going to be involved so he just minded her. She's a very good filly. You saw what she did in the Falmouth as well. She has a lot of speed. She quickened up very well. She's very pacey."[13]

Three weeks after her win at Leopardstown the filly was back in England for the Group One Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket and was made the 13/8 favourite in an eight-runner field. Always Smile and Irish Rookie were again in opposition whilst her other rivals included Ervedya (winner of the Poule d'Essai des Poulins, Coronation Stakes and Prix du Moulin in 2015), Volta (runner-up in the Prix Rothschild) and Arabian Queen. After racing in fourth place she made a forward move in the last quarter mile and went to the front approaching the final furlong. She kept on well under pressure in the closing stages and won by three quarters of a length from Always Smile with Ervedya a length away in third place.[14] After the race Moore said "She picked up very well and she was just dozing a little bit when I got serious with her, but she found a bit more". When asked about the filly's prospects in the Breeders' Cup Mile he added "Santa Anita will suit her, but Tepin will be hard to beat".[15]

Alice Springs did contest the Breeders' Cup Mile on 5 November and started the 4.2/1 fourth choice in the betting behind Limato, Tepin and Ironicus. She made little impact in the race and finished tenth of the fourteen runners behind Tourist.

2017: four-year-old seasonEdit

On her first appearance of 2017, Alice Springs started 6/4 favourite for the Gladness Stakes over seven furlongs at Naas Racecourse on 9 April but after briefly taking the lead in the final furlong she was overtaken and beaten half a length by Diamond Fields, to whom she was conceding five pounds in weight.[16]


Pedigree of Alice Springs (IRE), chestnut filly, 2013[1]
Galileo (IRE)
Sadler's Wells (USA)
Northern Dancer Nearctic
Fairy Bridge Bold Reason
Urban Sea (USA)
Miswaki Mr Prospector
Allegretta Lombard
Aleaugeoftheirown (IRE)
Danehill Dancer (IRE)
Danehill Danzig
Mira Adonde Sharpen Up
Lettre d'Amour
Golden Coral (USA)
Slew o' Gold Seattle Slew
Optimistic Lass Mr Prospector
Loveliest (Family 2-f)[5]
  • Alice Springs is inbred 4 × 4 to Mr Prospector, meaning that this stallion appears twice in the fourth generation of her pedigree.


  1. ^ a b "Alice Springs pedigree". Equineline. 2012-05-08. Retrieved 2013-05-05.
  2. ^ "Galileo stud record". Retrieved 2014-05-26.
  3. ^ "Aleagueoftheirown - Record By Race Type". Racing Post.
  4. ^ Timeform staff (1985). Racehorses of 1984. Timeform. ISBN 0-900599-40-5.
  5. ^ a b "Hyacinthus Mare - Family 2-f". Thoroughbred Bloodlines. Retrieved 2012-07-30.
  6. ^ "Tattersalls October Sale 2014". Racing Post.
  7. ^ "When You Want It Done, DoneDeal EBF Fillies Maiden result". Racing Post. 26 June 2015.
  8. ^ "Tattersalls Millions 2yo Fillies' Trophy result". Racing Post. 3 October 2015.
  9. ^ "Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf result". Racing Post. 30 October 2015.
  10. ^ "Falmouth Stakes result". Racing Post. 8 July 2016.
  11. ^ Greg Wood (8 July 2016). "Alice Springs' Falmouth Stakes win nets Aidan O'Brien Newmarket double". The Guardian.
  12. ^ "Matron Stakes result". Racing Post. 10 September 2016.
  13. ^ "Alice Springs bursts to Matron Stakes victory". RTE Sport. 10 September 2016.
  14. ^ "Sun Chariot Stakes result". Racing Post. 1 October 2016.
  15. ^ Myra Lewyn (1 October 2016). "'Alice' Wins Sun Chariot, BC Might Be Next". The Blood-Horse.
  16. ^ "Gladness Stakes result". Racing Post. Retrieved 12 April 2017.

External linksEdit