2023 Cardinal Condition Stakes Recap

Godolphin’s Bold Act took full advantage of a charmed rails run to win the Cardinal Condition Stakes, the final leg in the European Road to the 2023 Kentucky Derby series.

Coming into the race on the Chelmsford all-weather track on a three-race winning streak (two on turf, one on the all-weather), Bold Act was settled at the rear by jockey Harry Davies as Think Climate and Physique led the field.

As the runners rounded the final bend, most of the runners went wide, and Davies found a path near the rail and was quickly challenging the leaders. Brave Emperor and Killybegs Warrior were also up for the fight, but at the line it was Bold Act to score by half a length.

The victory earned Bold Act 30 points on the European Derby Road table, though he was not Triple Crown-nominated at the time of the race.

Brave Emperor’s second placing earned him 12 points, which combined with the 20 he earned for winning the Road to the Kentucky Derby Condition Stakes at Kempton two weeks beforehand, propelled him to 32 points, making him the winner of the European Derby Road series.

As his owners Middleham Park Racing made a late Triple Crown entry earlier in the week, Brave Emperor has a spot available to him in the Kentucky Derby starting gates should the owners wish to take it up.

Killybegs Warrior (third, nine points), favorite Iconic Moment (fourth, six points), and Alzahir (fifth, three points) were not Triple Crown nominees. If late nominations were made, Killybegs Warrior would be on 13 points overall and Alzahir 11 points.

By Alastair Bull

Cardinal Condition Stakes Previews:

Rogers and Kerstein: Inside the Kentucky Derby Podcast: Florida and Arkansas Derby Preview

Reilly: European Road: Brave Emperor bids for Derby berth in Cardinal Conditions


2023 Cardinal Condition Stakes Results


2023 Cardinal Condition Stakes Entries