Santa Barbara red-hot favourite for 1000 Guineas at Newmarket

Santa Barbara is set to go off clear favourite in the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday, despite only having one maiden win under her belt.

Santa Barbara is set to go off clear favourite in the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday, despite only having one maiden win under her belt.

Aidan O'Brien is hoping to land his seventh victory in the Rowley Mile Classic and is very bullish about Santa Barbara's prospects, who will be joined in the race by stablemate Mother Earth.

It is 16 years since the master of Ballydoyle first landed the fillies' Classic with Virginia Waters, since when he has added to his tally with Homecoming Queen, Minding, Winter, Hermosa and last year's brilliant winner Love.

Andrew Balding's Alcohol Free, winner of the Cheveley Park last season and the Fred Darling on her return two weeks ago, arguably heads the home defence.

She just held on from Statement and Vadream at Newbury and the three meet again.

Nell Gwyn winner Sacred represents Cheveley Park Stud and William Haggas, while Saffron Beach, who lost her unbeaten record when runner-up to Sacred in her trial, also takes her chance.

Richard Fahey is sweet on the claims of Fev Rover, a Group Two winner in France last season in the Prix du Calvados.

Thunder Beauty, Lullaby Moon, Seattle Rock and Star Of Emaraaty complete the field of 12.

Unfortunately, Pretty Gorgeous will miss the big race following an unsatisfactory scope.

The Joseph O'Brien-trained daughter of Lawman was a major contender for the Rowley Mile Classic, having won three of her five starts as a juvenile including the Group One Fillies' Mile over the Guineas course and distance in October.

However, Pretty Gorgeous was officially scratched on Friday morning, with O'Brien posting an explanation for her absence on social media.

O'Brien said on Twitter: "Unfortunately due to an unsatisfactory scope Pretty Gorgeous will not be declared for the 1000 Guineas this weekend."

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