TOMMY PROVES THE REAL G AFTER 12-HOUR TRIP
It might have taken Tommy G 12 hours to reach Goodwood Racecourse from Scotland, but he made the long trip worthwhile after landing the opening £75,000 Qatar Stewards’ Sprint Handicap for trainer Jim Goldie and the in-form Silvestre De Sousa. The five-year-old son of Makfi was a three-quarter length second in the 2017 renewal but made no mistake in the 2018 renewal of the six-furlong handicap, keeping on in tremendous fashion in the closing stages to score by three-quarters of a length.
Winning trainer Goldie, who saddled Haweyethenoo to victory in the 2012 edition of today’s feature race, the £250,000 Unibet Stewards’ Cup, said: “Tommy G is a home-bred and was second in this race last year, when he ran a blinder … We thought the ground might be a bit quick, but I said to Silvestre to just let him roll and when he hit the rising ground, he kicked on.”
SUITS YOU SIR! GOLDIE PROVES GOODWOOD KING WITH QUICKFIRE DOUBLE
Scottish trainer Jim Goldie recorded a double in the first two races on the fifth and final day of the Qatar Goodwood Festival with the victory of Sir Chauvelin in the £100,000 Qatar Summer Handicap. The six-year-old Authorized gelding travelled with menace throughout the 14-furlong handicap and showed a willing attitude in the closing stages to master Melting Dew, trained by Sir Michael Stoute, to score by a half-length under Robert Winston. The first two clear of the third, Hochfeld.
Goldie, recording his fourth victory at the scenic Sussex venue, said: “Sir Chauvelin ran in this race last year, when the soft ground didn’t suit him, and he has been a great horse. He’s an athlete and hopefully that will get him into the Ebor – we will give him a nice break before that … Robert got there a wee bit early. He could have delayed a bit more, but he has won and that is all that matters.”
CROSS COUNTER WINS THE G3 QATAR GORDON STAKES
Cross Counter won the Group Three one mile and four furlong Qatar Gordon Stakes in impressive fashion and a track record time of 2m 31.39s. A first Group race success for the three-year-old colt. Cross Counter was the clear four-and-a-half length winner from the Investec Derby runner-up Dee Ex Bee.
Alex Merriam, assistant to winning trainer Charlie Appleby, said: “It was a very nice performance, very impressive. He has done everything right, it is all going the right way and he won a handicap at Ascot last time very nicely. He only started up and had his first run in December, so he’s improving all the time. He’s a big raw horse and I think there is some more improvement to come.
TRAINER HUGO PALMER WINS HIS FIRST STEWARDS’ CUP
Gifted Master took his career earnings to £750,000 with his short-head victory in the £250,000 Qatar Stewards’ Cup, his winners’ prize being £155,625. Always near the front of the field, he was headed two furlongs out, but jockey Jason Watson kept his cool and produced the horse to put his head on the line to win in a fast 1m 9.56s. It was a first win in the famous handicap for Newmarket trainer Hugo Palmer, who has trained this horse since he was bought as a yearling.
“He has won all his handicap outings now!” said Palmer. “He was our first two-year-old winner of the year as a juvenile when he won at the Craven meeting in April, he finished his two year-old season rated 112 and he has been rated that at two, three and four and now at five and now he has just won a Stewards’ Cup off top-weight … A huge word has to go to the jockey – I wanted a high draw but not perhaps as a high as we got and I told him that and to gravitate across to the middle of the track to where we thought the nicest ground was. Jason [Watson] wasn’t remotely flustered when he was headed, he was strong, he was cool, he was calm – easy for a young lad to get going too quick.”
HAZZARD PROVES A MENACE TO RIVALS
The Paul Cole-trained Duke Of Hazzard showed a willing attitude to land the £30,000 Qatar EBF Stallions Maiden under David Probert. He travelled stylishly into contention in the home straight and when challenged by Sky Defender, the two-year-old son of Lope De Vega found plenty for pressure to score by a half-length in the seven-furlong event.
Cole, said: “Duke Of Hazzard ran really well in the Chesham at Royal Ascot, before finishing second in a hot maiden at Salisbury and we thought he had come on from that run … He drew away nicely there when he was challenged and he will probably go to Deauville for a Listed event now in about two weeks. It is worth a lot of money and I think he will improve for the step up to a mile … Historically, I’ve won a few races in the past here at Goodwood and it’s great to be back in the winner’s enclosure.”
KENT SCORES FOR FANNING
Joe Fanning registered his first victory of this year’s Qatar Goodwood Festival with the nose success of the well-supported favourite Vale Of Kent in the seven-furlong Qatar Handicap. The three-year-old son of Kodiac was a neck second at Goodwood on Wednesday in the Goodwood Racehorse Owners and Fanning was delighted with the three-year-old’s performance in today’s event.
Fanning said: “Vale Of Kent is a tough horse … He ran well at Goodwood the other day when he finished second … He pulls up a little bit in front but is a strong traveller, so I thought that he would win today … Seven furlongs is a good trip for him.”
THE NIGHT PORTER TURNS THE LIGHT OFF AT GOODWOOD
Apprentice Scott McCullagh registered his first winner at Goodwood following the success of Mick Channon’s The Night Porter in the concluding race of the 2018 Qatar Goodwood Festival, the £25,000 Qatar Apprentice Handicap over nine furlongs. The three-year-old son of Sixties Icon ran on strongly in the closing stages to score by a half-length.
McCullagh said: “It’s been a great week. I had a winner on Thursday at Epsom and to get a winner at Goodwood is a dream come true … That was my five winner and I hope I have a good career going forward.”
JOHNSTON LEADING TRAINER, MOORE LEADING JOCKEY AT THE 2018 QATAR GOODWOOD FESTIVAL
The result of the Qatar Handicap, race six on the final day of the 2018 Qatar Goodwood Festival, proved to be decisive in the Leading Trainer Award battle.
The winner, Lake Volta, gave trainer Mark Johnston his fourth winner of the week, equaling William Haggas’ total. However, Johnston has also had five horses finish second over the five days compared to Haggas’s one and this put the Yorkshire-based handler at the top of the trainers’ list. It is the 12th time that Johnston has won the Qatar Goodwood Festival trainers’ title and his third victory in succession.
He said: “It’s great. We come here every year – I kept telling Charlie (son and assistant) all last week, just like Royal Ascot, you’ve got to take the horse where it has got the best chance – you can’t save it for Goodwood … We’ve come with a strong team so it’s great to come out on top again. It has been a little frustrating over the last two days – we’ve had a few second places – so it’s great to get this win. It is a big team effort.”
Ryan Moore, the Racing UK Top Jockey with five winners ahead of runner-up Silvestre de Sousa on four, has donated his £1,000 prize to the Stevie Fisher Trust. It is Moore’s third Qatar Goodwood Festival title in a row and his fifth in total. Moore, who also won a subscription to Racing UK and a deluxe Goodwood hamper, donated his £1,000 cash prize to the Trust, set up to raise funds for Stevie Fisher, a friend of the Moore family and Sire De Grugy’s former farrier.