GLORIOUS GOODWOOD: LADIES' DAY ROUND-UP
Winter left her rivals cold to win the feature race at Glorious Goodwood - and helped make a new-look Ladies' Day a success.
Aidan O'Brien's superb filly was a comfortable winner of the Â£600,000 Qatar Nassau Stakes on day three of festival week - the first expected big-race result of the event. See the full story on Winter's win elsewhere on this site.
Ladies' Day was a blowy occasion, causing plenty of hats to take off, and did suffer from the odd shower but conditions were - happily - nothing like the atrocious ones on Wednesday, when 50mm of rain fell and left race-goers looking like drowned rats.
Thursday kicked off with 12 celebrity ladies gathering in the parade ring for the Magnolia Cup, this year raising an anticipated Â£200,000 for the Place 2 Be mental heatlh charity.
It was won by Dido Harding on Duck and Dumplings, trained by Scott Dixon. Cheltenham Gold Cup-winning owner Harding, who has ridden in all but one Magnolia Cup race (first run in 2011) at the festival, won the charity event for the first time when steering her mount to victory over five and a half furlongs.
The winner beat The Winning Lines, ridden by racing broadcaster Aly Vance, and third-placed Gideon Up, the mount of hat designer Emily Baxendale. Twelve ran, although Harrodian Flyer, the mount of magazine editor Victoria Gray, whipped round at the start and lost all chance of victory.
Harding, who was chief executive of phone group Talk Talk until May, was thrilled with her win, a victory that will rival her runner-up spot when riding her own horse, Cool Dawn, in the 1996 Foxhunter Chase at the Cheltenham Festival. Two years later the gelding won the Gold Cup under Andrew Thornton.
Harding, who had finished second in the Magnolia Cup for the past two years, said: "Goodwood does an absolutely fabulous job of this, and it's a privilege and an absolute pleasure to take part. I've been saying I had to keep doing it until I won, but retiring now would be very hard - we'll have to see. I've got my two little girls with me - it's the first time they've seen me ride in a race. They are 10 and 11 and called Emma and Becca - they have seen videos of Cool Dawn quite a few times.
"The horse I rode is a miler and likes soft ground, and it's quite soft out there so he gave me a great feel from start to finish. I can dream of coming back again."
The main racecard began with victory in the Matchbrook Betting Exchange Handicap Stakes for Jamie Spencer on Good Omen (8/1) for trainer David Simcock - who already had a big winner to his name from Tuesday and a third place in the Sussex Stakes on Wednesday. The field split as they came round the final bend and it was the horses furthest from the stands that came in first, second and third.
Good Omen, a winner at Doncaster in June and last time out at Yarmouth, made it three successes for the season. Trainer Simcock said: "Let's see what the handicapper does. I will need to speak to the owners in Hong Kong and see what they want to do. He was supposed to transfer to Hong Kong, whether he does or not, I am not sure, he obviously likes soft ground. He's going to stay a mile and a half in time, whether he does that now or later in the season, we'll see."
The Group 3 Markel Insurance Fillies' Stakes, registered as the Lillie Langtry Stakes, was a thriller and went to William Buick on the Charlie Appleby-trained five-year-old Endless Time. The 5/2 winner, wearing cheekpieces for the first time and ridden by Buick for Godolphin, beat Dubka (13/2) and Melodic Motion (11/2) by two necks, with another Godolphin candidate, Natural Scenery, back in fourth.
Endless Time was unplaced in Royal Ascot's Gold Cup on her previous start, but she is a very capable performer. Appleby said: "Coming here today we were happy to run her on this soft ground, although jockeys were saying after the first race that it was riding tacky. She's proved on soft, and I put the cheekpieces on because she was dropping back in trip and I hoped they would help her travel that bit better.
"When she went to York [close fourth in the Yorkshire Cup] she wandered about for a couple of hundred yards and I was keen to try cheekpieces over this trip. I didn't put them on in the Gold Cup when she was stepping up to two and a half miles."
Buick scored again 35 minutes later when he guided Barraquero to the Qatar Richmond Stakes, a Group 2 race for two-year-olds. Barraquero (4/1) is trained by Brian Meehan for Manton Thoroughbreds sporting the late Robert Sangster silks. It is a third win in the race for the trainer.
"I am very pleased, Barraquero has looked an exciting type right since the spring," said Meehan. "I was more concerned yesterday about [about the ground] with all the rain we had, I had a lovely filly here yesterday and she did not handle it. I got here this morning and it just seemed a little bit more civilised!"
Trainer Richad Hannon earned his second win in two days when Sean Levey came miraculously through the pack on Billesdon Brook to win the Telegraph Nursery Handicap Stakes in a photo finish.
Levey met nothing but trouble in running through the seven-furlong contest, but once the daughter of Champs Elysees, sent off the 100/30 favourite, found some daylight she flew home to win by a head.
"It was absolute disaster of a race, she has obviously got a bit of class about her as she got me out of all sorts of trouble," said Levey, celebrating his first Qatar Goodwood Festival success. "It was so late when the gaps did start appearing; she suffered a lot of interference from the three furlong marker down, when we got to the cut away we just got turned over by horses. I was hoping for gaps to come, but when we got them, we got turned over again.
"I saw the half-furlong marker and I thought, 'Do you know what, we've got a running chance at them now'. I can't believe she won, but she has. The boss [Richard Hannon Snr] just told me that if I'd got beat there, I'd have been sacked!"
The Victoria Racing Club EBF British Stallion Studs Maiden Fillies' Stakes was claimed by evens-favourite Roulette under James Doyle to give Michael Bell his second success of the week - and Big Orange owners the Gredleys their first.
Bell said: "It is very hard work on that ground for two-year-olds. She has never been in front in a race before in her life. We said before that we would try and make the running and use her experience. I thought she looked like winning by a couple of lengths at one point, but it really is very hard for two-year-olds in this ground."
Ladies' Day finished with the Tatler Handicap, which went to Quench Dolly (100/30 fav) for jockey George Buckell and trainer John Gallagher. Scenes of jubilation greeted Quench Dolly as she returned to the winners' enclosure after a three-length success.
Quench Dolly is trained near Moreton-in-Marsh by Gallagher and was bred by his wife Rebecca. The trainer has had winners at Goodwood before, but Quench Dolly is his first-ever success at Glorious Goodwood.
"Myself and Rebecca bred Quench Dolly from one of our mares. She has been so good and has given us everything right from her first debut win here," said the winning trainer of the three-year-old filly. "I had never had a first time out two-year-old winner until she did it. I have never had a Glorious Goodwood winner until now. I am bursting - it is brilliant!" laughed Gallagher. "It is shocking ground out there, but Hellvelyn's they like it and we know she likes a bit of cut in the ground. She's bolted up!
Day four of Glorious on Friday promises plenty more highlights - including the Betfred Mile and Qatar King George Stakes.
Stick with this website on Friday and Saturday for much more from Goodwood