Attraction, showing her distinctive gait
|Damsire||Pursuit of Love|
|Foaled||19 February 2001|
|Owner||Duke of Roxburghe|
|Queen Mary Stakes (2003)
Cherry Hinton Stakes (2003)
1000 Guineas (2004)
Irish 1000 Guineas (2004)
Coronation Stakes (2004)
Sun Chariot Stakes (2004)
Matron Stakes (2005)
|European Champion Two-Year-Old Filly (2003)
British Champion Two-Year-Old Filly (2003)
|Last updated on March 12, 2007|
Attraction (foaled 19 February 2001) is a retired British racehorse who was bred in Scotland and trained in England. She won several important races and was the first horse to win both the 1000 Guineas and the Irish 1000 Guineas. In a career which lasted from 2003 to 2005 she ran fifteen times and won ten races. She was also well known for her unusual and distinctive action.
Attraction was bred by her owner the Duke of Roxburghe at his stud at Floors Castle, near Kelso, Scotland. She is one of many good horses sired by Efisio and is half-sister to several minor winners.
Attraction's status as a thoroughbred is slightly contentious, as, unlike the overwhelming majority of racehorses, her family cannot be traced back to one of the accepted foundation mares. The family was therefore considered "half-bred", until it was admitted to the General Stud Book in 1969.
Attraction was born with crooked forelegs, a flaw that became even more apparent when she galloped. Because of this, her breeder believed that it would be impossible to sell her, and decided to race her under his own colours. Her action was variously described as resembling "a helicopter" and "a demented haymaker wielding a scythe", while one of her prospective trainers said that "it looked as though God had taken a day off when he created her",. She was eventually sent into training with Mark Johnston at Middleham, North Yorkshire.
2003: two-year-old season
Attraction made her debut in April 2003 with a five-length win in a minor stakes race at Nottingham. She followed up with wins in a small event at Thirsk and the Listed Hilary Needler Trophy at Beverley, before being sent south for the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot. Attraction was sent off the 13/8 favourite and she led from the start and to win by three lengths from Catstar, with the rest of the field a further five lengths back.
Three weeks later she was hampered at the start on the Cherry Hinton Stakes at Newmarket, but the interference made no difference to the result as she took the lead a furlong out and pulled away to win by five lengths. She was to have been aimed at the Cheveley Park Stakes, but leg problems and a broken pedal bone put her out for the rest of the season.
2004: three-year-old season
Attraction began her three-year-old career by going straight for the Classic 1,000 Guineas, for which she was made 11/2 second favourite. She took the lead early and after being seriously pressured for the first time in her career, stayed on to beat Sundrop by half a length. Three weeks later she became the first winner of the 1,000 Guineas to win the Irish equivalent, leading from the start as usual and keeping on strongly to beat Alexander Goldrun by a length, leading J A McGrath to describe her as "a truly great filly". Attraction then returned to Royal Ascot and extended her unbeaten run to eight with a win in the Coronation Stakes. Mick Channon, trainer of the runner-up Majestic Desert, said of Attraction "You probably won't see another horse like her in your lifetime".
Her unbeaten run, however, came to an end in her next race, and there were no excuses as she was beaten by the European Champion Older Horse Soviet Song in the Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket. She then ran the first bad race of her career, failing to cope with the soft ground and being virtually pulled up in the Prix Jacques le Marois. The Matron Stakes at Leopardstown, saw a rematch with Soviet Song, and Attraction once again had to give best to the older filly, although the margin was significantly closer than it had been at Newmarket. Attraction was to have ended her season with a run in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes but was withdrawn by Mark Johnston, who was unhappy with the state of the ground. Instead, Attraction was re-routed to the Sun Chariot Stakes, and was able to end her year with a win, scoring by a neck from the Celebration Mile winner Chic.
2005: four-year-old season
Attraction was kept in training at four, but injury problems restricted her to just three starts. She made no show behind Bullish Luck in the Champions Mile at Sha Tin in May, and could finish only fourth in the Hungerford Stakes at Newbury three months later. On her final start, however, she came back to her best to beat Chic in the Matron Stakes with the 2005 1,000 Guineas winner Virginia Waters back in third. Johnston was delighted: "It is great to silence the critics, she was so gutsy and she really deserved it".
At two Attraction was the highest ranked filly in Europe with an official rating of 119, two pounds below the champion colt Bago and was awarded the Cartier Racing Award for European Champion Two-Year-Old Filly.
At three she was given a rating of 118 by the World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings, making her the third best filly in the world, and the best three-year-old filly in the world over one mile. She was beaten to the title of European Champion Three-Year-Old Filly by Ouija Board.
|Native Partner||Raise A Native|
|Pursuit of Love
|Groom Dancer||Blushing Groom|
|Dance Quest||Green Dancer|
|Sun Prnce||Princely Gift|
|Lucasland (Family: B3)|
- Armytage, Marcus (2003-07-09). "Attraction Cherry-ripe". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Attraction pedigree". Thoroughbredinternet.com. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- "Half-Bred Mares". Tbheritage.com. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Main Attraction Lost". London: The Sun. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Hilary Needler Trophy". Racing Post. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- Armytage, Marcus (2004-05-03). "Duke's Filly Walks a Crooked Mile". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Attraction makes history with Guineas double". London: The Telegraph. 2004-05-24. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- Evans, Richard (2004-06-19). "Attraction's Crowning Moment". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- J A McGrath (2004-09-25). "Rakti to stamp his class". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- "Sun Chariot Stakes". Racing Post. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- Eddie Fremantle at Newmarket (2004-10-03). "It's a stroll for Johnston's favourite filly". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- "Attraction takes Matron prize". Sportinglife. 2010-03-12. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Hawk Wing Tops International Classifications". BloodHorse.com. Retrieved 2012-06-30.
- Evans, Richard (2004-01-13). "BHB spark controversy with award for Falbrav". The Daily Telegraph (London).
- "Attraction Stud record". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Attraction pedigree". equineline.com. 2012-05-08. Retrieved 2012-06-30.
- "Perion Mare - Half-Bred Family 3". Bloodlines.net. Retrieved 2012-06-30.