Bred: Watership Down Stud (GB)
Dam: Twyla Tharp, by Sader’s Wells
It is rare a talented filly from the barn of trainer John Gosden sneaks up on anyone, but The Fugue did just that when she broke through to take the Nassau Stakes (Eng-G1) at Goodwood in early August 2012.
A daughter of top sire Dansili, The Fugue had made a big run to finish third in the Epsom Oaks (Eng-G1) two starts earlier in June, but that result left Gosden fuming as the filly got knocked back to the rear of the field in the early going and struggled to find clear running. It was regular rider William Buick who was left stewing in the wake of The Fugue’s Nassau triumph, however, considering he gave up the mount on her to Richard Hughes in order to ride fellow Gosden-trainee Izzi Top in the Nassau.
Bred and campaigned by Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber, The Fugue followed that breakout triumph with a near-miss disappointment, finishing second by a neck in the Yorkshire Oaks (Eng-G1), an effort that was strong enough to convince Gosden to move forward with plans for a start in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1). The Fugue had a rough trip in the Filly and Mare Turf but managed to get up for third before taking a seven month break.
The Fugue started her 2013 campaign by running third against males in the Group 1 Princes of Wales's Stakes. Many jumped off her bandwagon after she finished last in her next start but she bounced back in the Yorkshire Oaks to romp by four lengths. The filly farther solidified herself as one of the leading females in Europe when she won the Red Mills Irish Champion Stakes by 1 1/4 lengths over a strong field that included mulitiple Group 1 winner Al Kazeem and Irish Derby winner Trading Leather. The win earned her a place in the Breeders' Cup Turf, giving her connections extra incentive to send her back over to the United States as she had also earned a berth to the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf with her win in the Yorkshire Oaks, giving them two choices for their star filly.
The filly finished the season with the Grade 1 Breeders Cup Turf, where she finished second.