Al Husn wore down the dual Group One-winner Nashwa to cause a minor surprise in the JenningsBet In Shiremoor Hoppings Fillies’ Stakes at Newcastle.
Nashwa won the Prix de Diane and Nassau Stakes in a glittering three-year-old season, while she also ran well in the Oaks, the Prix de l’Opera and at the Breeders’ Cup.
She was sent off the 8-11 favourite to get back to winning ways under Hollie Doyle, who tried to dictate matters from the front.
John and Thady Gosden’s Nashwa raced keenly throughout but when Doyle asked the Frankel filly to put the race to bed, she immediately took a couple of lengths out of the field.
However, she did not make life easy for Doyle and began to hang to her left, and all the while Jim Crowley was coming with a strong run on the Roger Varian-trained Al Husn.
Al Husn (3-1) herself was a Listed winner last time out and had only lost one of her previous five races so is clearly on the upgrade and she continued her progression.
Deep inside the final furlong as Nashwa began to tire, Al Husn was hitting top gear and won by half a length.
Crowley told Sky Sports Racing of the winner: “She’s clearly thriving, she looked so well in herself tonight.
“She felt in great form, I was bit concerned I was drawn nine but I was able to get a really nice position.
“It was a bit of a rush when we turned for home but she picked up nicely and hit the line well.
“She’s improving all the time and off that run you crack on and aim a little bit higher, there’s no reason why she can’t progress. She wants to win, she’s not big but she’s a little terrier.
“I think so (earned a crack at the Nassau). I’ll speak to Roger and connections but she’d have nothing to lose running in a race like that and everything to gain.
“Touch wood she’ll progress again.”
Betfair cut the winner to 10-1 from 25s for the Nassau Stakes at Goodwood.
Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager for Nashwa’s owner Imad Al Sagar said he was disappointed with the run.
He said: “I thought it was disappointing, we expected a really a good run for her as she needed the race in France but she’s been straightforward at home since.
“Hollie was really happy apart from the last bit so we obviously have a little bit of thinking to do to see what the best plan might be.
“In France I knew we were in a bit more trouble but here I was pretty confident.
“Ideally we’ll still think about the Nassau but we have to give it some good consideration.”