Two very familiar names ruled the roost on the first day of Glorious Goodwood - but Richard Hughes and Richard Hannon’s double was not without controversy.
The jockey and trainer partnership who love the Downs had two successes as a crowd of 13,000 packed into Goodwood to enjoy some enthralling races.
They were celebrating as Strong Suit took the honours in the day-one feature race, the bet365 Lennox Stakes, thanks to a calm and assured ride by Hughes.
But it was not a journey that went without criticism as Barry Hills, trainer of second-placed Red Jazz, who had led for much of the contest, said: “The winner chopped across him and he (Hughes) keeps doing it. The winner won on merit but it’s wrong. It’s the sort of move that could have cost us second.”
Assistant trainer Richard Hannon junior was buoyed by Strong Suit’s win and said he could be back for the 2012 Sussex Stakes.
“His win at Ascot was very good and he ran well in France. He might be a horse for the Sussex Stakes next year,” Hannon said.
“I think he will get a mile in time but there are so many nice races like this for him to mop up. There’s the Hungerford Stakes and the seven-furlong Group One in France, the Prix de la Foret. There are plenty of options for him.”
In truth the criticism from Hills did little to take the shine off Hughes’ day and he went on to notch a double for Hannon in thrilling style as Moustache pipped Llanarmon Lad by a nose in the Casino at bet365 EBF Assertive Maiden Stakes two races later.
Hughes and Hannon teamed up for a record nine wins at last year’s festival and on this form you wouldn’t bet against them doing it again - although they’d surely forego another record in return for winning the big one on Wednesday, the Sussex Stakes, in which their champion goes up against Frankel in what some bill as a clash of the best two flat racers in the world.
Elsewhere it was a good day for outsiders, with 20/1, 16/1 and 14/1 shots all first past the post in other contests.
It was a 20/1 winner which kicked off the week as Graham Gibbons on Arlequin held off Ryan Moore’s late challenge on Modun in the bet365 Stakes.
Next up, trainer Mark Johnston’s first success of the festival - and probably the first of several - came as 2011 Derby winner Silvestre de Sousa won by a neck on Namibian from the favourite Fiorente and Moore.
The bet365 Molecomb Stakes went to Irish runner Requinto, ridden by Wayne Lordan.
The Poker at bet365 Stakes was won by JP Guillambert on 16/1 Red Gulch ahead of Guest Book (de Sousa).
And there was another big-priced winner - 14/1 - courtesy of George Baker on Secret Asset in the Mobile at Bet365 Stakes Handicap, trained by Jane Chapple-Hyam.
The first day of the festival concluded with a charity cricket match between the Lord’s Taverners and a Racing XI, in aid of Great ormond Street Hospital.
Goodwood officials declared themselves delighted by the success of day one and reported that the Gordon Enclosure was a sell-out on Saturday, with the Lennox Enclosure going the same way.
Thursday’s Ladies Day could be a sellout in the same two enclosures.
Tickets can be booked at www.goodwood.com or by calling 01243 755055.
Watch the slideshow to see photographs taken on day one.
* Join our live coverage of day two at www.chichester.co.uk on Wednesday and get the fastest updates live from the course.