Private purchase Porta Fortuna books ticket to Royal Ascot with G3 win

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Porta Fortuna provided a swift return on investment on Sunday with a breakthrough Group race score in the Coolmore Stud Irish EBF Fillies Sprint Stakes (G3) at Naas to book her place at Royal Ascot.

The daughter of Caravaggio was purchased privately by Avenue Bloodstock in conjunction with Philip Shelton of Medallion Racing following her debut success last month at the Curragh. The Donnacha O’Brien-trained filly now races for Barry Fowler/Medallion Racing ’20/Steve Weston/Dean Reeves Thoroughbred Racing.

One of a competitive field of 13, Porta Fortuna showed bright pace under Gavin Ryan to hold a good early position before quickening to the front a furlong out and hold the closing effort of Navassa Island. 

“We thought she was a nice filly, but obviously you never expect to win with a filly that’s had one run in a Group race,” said Donnacha O’Brien. “It’s nice to see her handle the step up in class well.

“She has a really good pedigree, back along there are a lot of good horses in it.

“She was bought by some American partners, it’s great for them and exciting. We’ll speak to them now but there is probably a good chance she’ll go to Ascot now.

“If she goes it will probably be for the Albany, she looked to get a stiff six furlongs here well.

“She handles all kinds of ground so I wouldn’t be worried either way.”

Her win provided cause for celebration in the US, where her new partners were watching on.

“We traditionally try to buy one to two horses a cycle from Europe,” Phillip Shelton told the TDN. “We find that the prices are a little more reasonable, and you can find a horse with Grade 1 potential. We bought a filly named Papilio last year from Europe who won the Grade 2 Appalachian at Keeneland in April.

“We work with Mark McStay of Avenue Bloodstock and we started discussing if there was a deal to be done. Luckily, we were able to get a deal done, and were happy to keep the filly with Donnacha. We couldn’t do any of it without our partners who trust us to put them in on the right horses. Our Medallion partners have been great, as well as Steve Weston and Barry Fowler, who are two of our biggest supporters, and partners on Papilio as well. This is the first horse we have had with Dean Reeves, but he has been a Taylor Made customer in the past.”

Porta Fortuna was bred by Whisperview Trading out of Too Precious, a winning Holy Roman Emperor sister to Saturday’s Doomben Cup (G1) runner-up Numerian. 

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