ANNIKE BYE HANSEN
Beating 2,000 Guineas winner
Takeko wins Giant Sandman Cup
15 July 21: Takeko, who ran second in the Norwegian 1,000 Guineas, followed up with a win in the Giant Sandman Cup over 1600 metres on turf, where she not only beat the winner of the 2,000 Guineas but also proved far too good for older horses. This may have been a handicap though, in effect, Takeko was actually taking a step up in class here – and she is clearly one of the better three-year-olds in Scandinavia these days. Annike, with the help of Walter Buick, has once more proved that high class performers do not have to cost a fortune. Takeko was purchased for 12,000 guineas (about 150,000 kroner) at the Tattersalls December Sales and this win, worth 55,000 kroner, pushed her seasonal earnings to 155,000 kroner. Anything this daughter of Mehmas does from now on can be seen as a bonus. All being well with her, that bonus should be considerable, for Takeko just keeps on improving. This was only her fourth start, and second win, since she joined Annike's team.
Ridden by Jacob Johansen, Takeko captured the race by three parts of a length from Simply Minds, who held second by a neck from the staying-on Like a King. Like a King had won the Norwegian 2,000 Guineas on his previous outing, with Simply Minds a length behind him in fourth place. Like a King's winning time that day was just 1/10 sec. sharper than the time Takeko clocked as she was was runner-up in the fillies' classic.
Takeko was travelling noticeably well just off a strong pace in the Giant Sandman Cup, and she advanced to take charge approaching the 200-metres marker. Though 'take charge' may not be the right phrase, not quite that soon anyway, as five horses were all in with a chance at that stage. Takeko gradually drew off, and she won the race well, showing the same positive attitude we have seen from her in previous races. She ran third in a Dundalk maiden last October, and that race has now produced four subsequent winners of six races combined.
Annike said after the race that Takeko, owned by Ninja Racing, will be aimed at the Landwades Stud Stakes (LR) over this same course and distance on Derby day (22 August), “possibly with one run before that day”, according to the trainer. The Lanwades Stud is worth 150,000 kroner to the winner and has attracted 14 early entries; Ascot Brass, Bassoline, Buckybabe, Careless Whisper, Eesha My Flower, For The Roses, Freed From Desire, Nouvelle Lune, Queen Rouge, Rapidash, Sophie B, Takeko, Thunderry and Victiore Pisa. GS
1,000 Guineas next
Takeko impressive in maiden breaker
10 June 2021: Takeko was the shortest priced favourite on this eight-race card but not many could have expected her to win the night's maiden event in the manner she did. Ninja Racing's filly, imported from England ahead of this season, absolutely bolted up under a confident Per-Ander Gråberg, beating My French Dream hard held by 2 1/2 lengths. She ran the 1600 metres in 1.39.7, exactly the same time clocked by Simply Minds as he took a good winners' race over the same distance half a an hour earlier. The ground was good, something that clearly suited the well actioned Takeko much better than the heavy ground she encountered on her seasonal debut. She advanced smoothly coming up by the stands' side rail at the finish and got to the lead 300 metres out, where she quickened right away. In a matter of strides, it was all over. Her stable companion Tambora Queen missed the break completely in the same race and was always trailing thereafter. She did make up some ground, however, and beat two home. Takeko's next start will be in the Norwegian 1,000 Guineas on June 26, a race Annike won with Unwanted Beauty two years ago.
Seeyouincourt created a favourable impression when third in the sprint maiden on the night, while Calcaterre (fourth) and Meste dos Magos (fifth) were both a bit below form in Norsk Forening For Fullblodsavls Løp, won by Pirlo. GS
Stabell talk 2021
Takeko - interesting young filly
Annike secured an interesting young filly at the 2020 Tattersalls December Sales as her agent Walter Buick got the final bid for Takeko on behalf of a racing partnership. Takeko, formerly trained by Henry de Bromhead in Ireland, she is a maiden but she has good form in the book - something her Irish handicap mark of 80 confirms. She ran third in maiden races over 6 furlongs at The Curragh and Dundalk. Her good run at The Curragh came in June, while the Dundalk performance happened in October. Takeko has run well when sent to the lead and when held up up, and she seems versatile. A well bred daughter of Mehmas, she is out of Ahd (Elusive Quality) - an unraced mare that has has also produced Hot Team (Zoffany), a smart gelding whose finest hour came when he captured the one-mile Grand Criterium de Bordreaux (LR) as a juvenile. He had previously won a 7-furlong Novice Stakes at Newbury. Takeko's second dam, Abby Boad (Danehill), was a fast 2yo filly for trainer Brian Meehan. Ridden by Frankie Dettori, Abby Road won the St. Hugh's Stakes (LR) at Newbury.
This is a family with a fair bit of speed, but it is also the family of Ballagh Rocks, a Grade 3 winning miler for top trainer Bill Mott in the USA. Ballagh Rocks has also finished second in the Maker's Mark Mile (G1) at Keeneland and third in the Fourstardave (G1) at Saratoga. He is still in training. With good results and a decent pedigree, it's reasonable to assume that Takeko will make her mark this year. For a start, she must be one of the best maidens in Scandinavia.