A TRIBUTE TO RUSSIAN ROYALE WHO RECENTLY RETIRED FROM RACING.
01 May 2010.
Royal Applause-Russian Royale.
Russian Royale is a tough mare, the veteran of 74 races, 42 over hurdles, and a further 32 on the flat.She is by the dual Group 1 winning sprinter Royal Applause, out of a mare who won three times, up to seven furlongs, so it is a bit of a surprise, that Russian Royale needs a stamina test to bring out the best in her.
Russian Royale started her career as a two year old in August 2012, in the care of Devon trainer Stuart Kittow, finishing down the field on her only run as a juvenile at Salisbury.She did win first time out as a three year old, again at Salisbury, over six furlongs, suggesting she could be above average, and earning an official mark of 71.In total she ran 13 times for the Kittow yard, winning for the second time in October 2014, over 14 furlongs at Salisbury once again.
Russian Royale was purchased at the Newmarket sales by Micky as a potential dual purpose horse, and in December at Catterick she made her hurdles debut under Wilson Renwick. Her initial efforts were uninspiring, as in six attempt she failed to get competitive,In her next race at Perth in April 2015, she was travelling smoothly under Brian Hughes, but dropped away to finish seventh after hitting two out, over two and a half miles, on her first run over jumps on good ground.A return to Perth in June on Summer ground, and dropping back to two miles off a career low mark of 88 did the trick,as she won by six lengths, as the 9/4 favourite.She was back in the winners enclosure just 12 days later at Market Rasen,this time coming home by five lengths, the handicapper must have been impressed, as he raised her 16lb for those two wins.In July she ran at Cartmel, finishing second, but being nudged up a further 4lb. In October she was back at Market Rasen, with our new 10lb claiming conditional jockey, Finn O'Toole in the saddle for the first time.
Russian Royale once again took her form to a new level when coming home by four and a half lengths, this time the handicapper raised her to 117.She backed that form up the next time at Sedgefield in a mares only race, when finishing second, once again under Finn. Russian Royale's jump mark now mirrored her flat mark, and the following April 2016, she returned to the level, finishing third off 71 at Pontefract. That blew the cobwebs away as from a slightly reduced mark of 69 at Catterick next time, over 12 furlongs, with PJ McDonald riding, she won at the very rewarding odds of 20/1.Back at Pontefract at the end of May she probably ran right up to her best,when finishing third off 75,but following that run she lost her way under both codes, and it wouldn't be until March 2018, that she found her form again.
Becky Smith took over as Russian Royale's new jockey, and finished third on her at Sedgefield, she also placed on her next two starts, and got her back in the winners enclosure at Hexham in June from a much reduced mark of 94.She next ran on the flat from a mark of just 54, with Billy Garritty doing the steering, and she finished second.In a further nine runs under both codes, Russian Royale once again struggled to find her form, until in January of 2020, on soft ground, which is not her favourite surface, she finished second with Aiden Macdonald taking off 10lb.
Russian Royale's season was stopped because of lock down, and she was put out to grass.On her return in September at Sedgefield she ran with promise to finish sixth, beaten by eight lengths, but that proved to be a false dawn, as in five subsequent starts she has failed to get competitive. Her career came to an end on March 21st, 2021, when falling for the first time in her career, three flights from home, and at the age of 11, she has earned her retirement.
Like all our other retired horses, Russian Royale is guaranteed a loving home for the rest of her days.