There has not been a winner of the Fillies’ Triple Crown since Oh So Sharp landed the classic treble in 1985. With two legs of the 2020 version in safekeeping, could Ballydoyle be tempted? Love has the first two legs under her belt but is there enough interest in what used to be the ultimate test to enter the pantheon of greats?
It was four and a quarter lengths that Love won the 1000 Guineas by in June. That form has looked a little in and out since but she herself looked a class apart on the day. She was heavily campaigned as a juvenile, taking on Group 1 company the last twice she was seen. She had clearly matured well over the winter as she has kicked on again.
Her Epsom win was nothing short of breathtaking. A burn-up saw the race fall apart somewhat but the pair who chased her home came from similar positions to Love but were simply unable to live with her. The further she went, the stronger she looked with the official margin a scarcely believable nine lengths.
Sun Princess won by twelve lengths in 1983 but the ground that year was desperate and they finished like three-mile chasers. Love’s victory was on good ground and was without question one of the most visually impressive classic wins in recent memory.
Would Ballydoyle consider a step up to fourteen furlongs in a bid to win the Triple Crown? They did with Camelot in 2012 when he was beaten by Encke but a filly asks a very different question. She is bred to stay that far, two full siblings of hers stayed fourteen furlongs (Peach Tree a winner at the trip) so it wouldn’t be out the question. Sadly though, while the quest for Triple Crown winners is still strong in America, the desire for them over here has disappeared in recent years.
The other ‘obvious’ option would be to send Love to France to take on the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. The allowances for three-year-old fillies there have been exploited in the last twelve years by Zarkava, Danedream, Treve and Enable. She would likely take on the last-named there as well as potentially at Keeneland for the Breeders’ Cup in November. Wherever they do send her, she will long be remembered as the winner of two classics by wide margins.