Seniority proves Golden for Her Majesty at Goodwood

Big handicap prize for Royal runner

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Seniority provided the Queen with a winner at Goodwood as Ryan Moore picked a path through to claim the Unibet Golden Mile.

It was a third successive victory in the valuable handicap for Moore on the William Haggas-trained four-year-old, who was sent off favourite for the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot but could finish only eighth.

The 9-2 joint-favourite on this occasion together with the unlucky Escobar, Seniority was briefly short of room before quickening impressively to prevail by half a length.

Poet’s Society stuck on gamely for second, while Original Choice, a stablemate of the winner and third over 10 furlongs earlier in the week, was third once more. Cape Byron was fourth.

Haggas said: “It was a rough old race, but in that situation, if you are travelling, and he certainly was, you’ve got half a chance.

“When the gap arrived he showed a smart turn of foot and in the end won not a shade cosily, but certainly well enough.

“I think a big handicap like this with a big field suited him, but I’m not sure where he will go, we will get him home and make a plan.”

John Warren, racing manager for the Queen, said: “I can’t be sure Her Majesty will be watching right now, as I’m not sure what she’s doing today, but she’ll be watching very shortly.”

Warren added: “I never quite know what she has got on. She was really fascinated to watch the horse run today.

“It was a competitive field and a really big effort from the horse. Her Majesty watches every race, so she will watch the race with tremendous interest and will be very grateful for the support Qatar has given this race meeting.”

Haggas doubled up when Pretty Baby justified 3-1 favouritism in the L’Ormarins Queens Plate Oak Tree Stakes, despite her saddle slipping, with Dancing Star going down as an unlucky loser.

The 2016 Stewards’ Cup winner was repeatedly blocked when trying to make a move, despite being handy in the early stages.

In contrast Pretty Baby had a clear run down the outside, while Oisin Murphy had to sit and suffer on the rail.

Once she got out Dancing Star flew, but Pretty Baby, who made it an uncomfortable finish for Dane O’Neill, had flown and held on by a neck. Indian Blessing ran a big race under a penalty for third.

Haggas said: “Dane said when he went round the top bend the saddle went forwards and it wasn’t quite as smooth as he’d have liked it to be, as she was lugging in a bit.

“She’s a nice filly that will go up in grade in the City of York or the Hungerford Stakes.”

Don Armado (11-1) followed up a win two weeks ago with a clear-cut success in the Unibet Nursery Handicap.

Ridden by Harry Bentley, the Stuart Williams-trained colt beat Alfie Solomons by a length and a quarter.

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