There was a royal flavour to the Goodwood Cup – but The Queen’s big hope failed to come up with the goods and the famous blue of Godolphin regained one of racin’g’s oldest trophies.
Zara Tindall, granddaughter of The Queen, was present for the prizegiving after the Artemis-sponsored Group 2 feature race of Ladies’ Day but there was no fairytale win for Estimate, owned by Her Majesty.
Insread old campaigner Kieren Fallon did the business on Cavalryman, completing quite a turnaround having come sixth last year when Brown Panther, only third this time, was the victor.
Trainer Saeed bin Suroor has his sights set on the Emirates Melbourne Cup after Cavalryman led home a 1-2 for the stable when coming home a neck in front of Ahzeemah.
“Cavalryman is a good fighter,” said bin Suroor. “He won over two miles in Dubai on firmer ground and also he won last time over a mile and a half at Newmarket on the soft. He runs on any ground and is doing really well. He improves with age.
“He is very easy to train, very simple. Whatever you ask of him in the morning, he does it really well. When he work over seven furlongs or a mile, he doesn’t show you a lot because he is a stayer. I think a mile and a six furlongs or two miles is the best trip for him.
“I said to Kieren (Fallon) to keep the horse where he is happy but the best way, like when he ran and won in Dubai, is to come from behind. He is a tough horse and always runs well.
“He has shown some turn of foot and now we will take him to York for the Lonsdale and then, for the end of the season, we will talk to Shiekh Mohammed but it could be the Melbourne Cup. Ahzeemah could be another option for the Melbourne Cup and I would like to take three horses down to Australia. For Australia you need to have a horse with class and speed.
“Two miles is his best trip and he won well last time over and a mile and a half on soft ground.
“Ahzeemah could also go to Australia. He needed his first race then he didn’t stay two and a half miles last time - I think two miles is his best trip as well.”
It was Saeed bin Suroor’s 72nd Goodwood winner and his 20th at Glorious Goodwood.
Fallon was celebrating his first Goodwood Cup. Cavalryman looked set to win decisively approaching the final furlong but Ahzeemah stayed on stoutly from the chasing pack under Harry Bentley to be beaten only a neck. Brown Panther was four and a half lengths further back in third.
Fallon, riding his 40th winner at Glorious Goodwood, said: “Cavalryman is a real, tough horse. He was campaigned during the Carnival successfully in Dubai all winter and he has come here and won a Goodwood Cup, which is a very difficult race to win. This horse has just gone from strength to strength.
“There was no pace at Newmarket, so Silvestre had to make his own running, which wouldn’t have been ideal. I didn’t want to do that today - the pace wasn’t great but it was OK so I was happy enough to sit in because this horse has a good turn of foot.
“It’s a great race, a great meeting and it’s great to be in the winner’s enclosure.
“This horse, when he hit the front, thought that he had done enough. I thought I was clear and I didn’t realise we had another horse coming but he had enough done.”
Other Ladies’ Day highlights on the track included a double for the Richard Hannon/Richard Hughes partnership after their blanks on the first two days, and another win for Mark Johnston and Joe Fanning.