July 2023


Shaquille after winning the Group 1 The Pertemps Network July Cup Stakes at Newmarket (credit: Ian Headington / Racingfotos.com)

SHAQUILLE (GB) backed up an extraordinary success in the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot last month with a defiant win in Newmarket Racecourses’ midsummer headline sprint, the Group 1 Pertemps Network July Cup, on a wind swept Saturday afternoon.

After a slow start, Shaquille quickly made up lost ground and thundered through the field under Rossa Ryan who made a smart mid-way move and powered past Henry Candy’s RUN TO FREEDOM (GB) and Ralph Beckett’s KINROSS (GB) and kept on strongly winning by a length-and-a-half clear of the runner-up. It was a 1-2-3 for British-bred runners.

The victory represents Shaquille’s sixth win on the bounce and seven in total, with his career earnings now standing at over one million pounds making Camacho the highest earning UK female trainer in a year.

Shaquille was bred by co-owner Martin Hughes, in partnership with Michael Kerr-Dineen, with whom he has owned a large proportion of his racehorses. Hughes’ two-time Group 1 winning homebred is out of unraced broodmare MAGIC, who boards at Ian and Kath Hutchinson’s Battlefield Stud, just down the road from trainer Julie Camacho’s yard in Malton, North Yorkshire.

Speaking to ITV Racing after the race, an overwhelmed Camacho said:

“It’s a massive moment. We’re a small yard up North. It’s lovely to be able to come down here with a horse like him and show how good he is. It’s not as if it were an overnight success. We’ve been at it a long time. It’s just nice that people in the north can have a bit of success because there are some really good trainers in the north.”

When asked about Shaquille’s breeder, Camacho added:

“It’s great for Martin (Hughes), he’s put a hell of a lot into the business and to racing full stop. It’s great for Martin to have bred him as well. It’s just the icing on the cake.”

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