Decorated Knight impressive winner of the Meld Stakes

Decorated Knight and George Baker winning from Portage (James Doyle) in the "Icon Meld Stakes" GR3 at Leopardstown - Alain Barr - 14.07.2016

Decorated Knight swoops under George Baker

Decorated Knight confirmed he was a colt on the major upgrade on Thursday with an impressive victory in the Group 3 Meld Stakes at Leopardstown.

Held up by George Baker, the homebred son of Galileo swept through from the back of the field to take up the running while still on the bridle. Asked for his effort as he hit the front, he lengthened clear to win well by two lengths from Portage.

It was Decorated Knight’s second win of the season for Roger Charlton following his win in the Festival Stakes at Goodwood in May. He was sent to Epsom for his next start in the Diomed Stakes, in which he ran extremely well when going down by only a head to Tullius despite not enjoying the ground or track.

“I’ve sat on him at home and Andrea Atzeni, who has ridden him plenty of times, said he had become straightforward,” George Baker told At The Races. “The quick ground helped him.

Pearling, dam of Decorated Knight

Pearling, dam of Decorated Knight

“When I wanted him, he was there and won well. He couldn’t have done it any more smoothly.”

Tom Charlton, representing his father, added: “We’re very happy. He’s done nothing but progress through the year. It’s the first time he’s had his conditions – quick ground. He didn’t handle the track at Epsom, or the ground – in the circumstances, that was a very creditable effort.” 

Decorated Knight, who was Group 2-placed for Roger Varian last year, is the first foal out of Pearling, a daughter of Storm Cat who joined the stud when purchased by Tony Nerses at the 2011 Tattersalls December Sale. Pearling boasts a pedigree out of the top drawer as a sister to champion Giant’s Causeway, subsequently a multiple champion sire for Coolmore in America, and the Group 2-placed Freud, himself a leading sire in New York.

Decorated Knight returns with George Baker

Decorated Knight returns with George Baker

Another sibling, Cherry Hinton Stakes winner You’resothrilling, is the dam of top miler Gleneagles, Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Marvellous and last year’s Group 3-winning juvenile Coolmore, who provided a further update for the family on Saturday when third in the Grade 1 Belmont Oaks.

It is also the immediate family of last season’s Classic-placed colt Storm The Stars.

Pearling’s three-year-old, the Dubawi colt Azizaan, has been placed this year for Roger Varian.

Pearling also has a two-year-old filly by Frankel named Ambrosia and a yearling colt by Dansili.

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