Commanche Falls notches notable Stewards' Cup double as Glorious Goodwood closes in style
Commanche Falls (25/1) became the sixth dual winner of the Coral Stewards' Cup, and the first since Sky Diver in 1967 and 1968, with a blistering display in the heritage handicap as Glorious Goodwood came to an absorbing end.
Rated 2lb higher than last year, the Michael Dods-trained Commanche Falls produced his customary late surge under Connor Beasley to edge out Tabdeed (12/1) in a head-bobbing finish to the £250,000 showpiece.
Regional (13/2) grabbed third under Ryan Moore, while Swedish raider Good Eyes defied huge odds of 150/1 to finish fourth. Well-backed favourite Inver Park could never land a blow down the middle of the track.
The action unfolded towards the stands’ side and the first four home were all drawn in stalls 19 or higher.
Dods told Racing TV: “I watched it on the big screen. We had runners here, so I needed to come here. I was watching the race thinking Tinto was travelling nicely just to the right of him. I thought Commanche Falls was travelling closer than expected. I thought they would be travelling hard and he would get a bit more out-paced.
"Then I saw Connor pushing him and coming through and I thought ‘he has a good chance here’. He hit the front and then I think the other one came and headed him – I’ve only seen it once – then he fought back on the line. It was great for Connor and great for everyone. It’s great for the owners and the whole team. He has just done so well. After the disappointment of Ascot [unseated]… we thought he would run a big race at Ascot, it all went wrong. We took a ticket and he went in joint last [into the stalls] today and Connor has given him a great ride. To do that two years running is what dreams are made of.
“It is tremendous for the whole team, it’s a whole team effort. It’s not just me, it’s the whole team and the owners – they’ve been great owners all along and have stood by us. I’m delighted for everybody involved, especially Connor – to go down there again, probably with only one ride today, he has shown how good a jockey he is again.”
Sea La Rosa (9/4) showed that staying was her game as she ran down long-time leader Urban Artist in the G2 Qatar Lillie Langtry Stakes.
It looked as though Urban Artist (18/1) had built up an unassailable lead but her stride started to shorten entering the final two furlongs. Tom Marquand meanwhile timed his challenge well on the eventual winner, who ground her way to the front approaching the final half furlong to score by a length.
Urban Artist did well to hang on for second, with Emily Dickinson, sent off the 13/8 favourite, a further neck behind having finished strongly from the back of the field.
Maureen Haggas, wife of winning trainer William, said: "Sea La Rosa is a lovely improving filly - she's as tough as old boots. The first race she won at Haydock this year, she pulled his [Tom Marquand's] arms out and still won. Today was a weird race, but she's tough and she seemed to stay well. As soon as she hits the front, she stops so you have to get her there on the line. It was a pretty stern test and she will know she's had a race."
Trawlerman (6/1) provided leading apprentice jockey Benoit De La Sayette with his second success of this year’s Qatar Goodwood Festival, staying on strongly to win the 14-furlong Coral Summer Handicap.
The son of Golden Horn disappointed when sent off joint-favourite for last month’s Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes at Ascot and had been beaten at Newmarket subsequently but, aided by a first-time hood, proved a completely different proposition.
The winning margin was a length from the in-form Bague D’Or (4/1), with third-placed Euchen Glen (20/1) unlucky not to finish closer having met trouble in running.
The Foxes (5/1) got his career back on track as he ran down 4/5 favourite Classic in the closing stages of the seven-furlong British European Breeders’ Fund EBF Maiden.
Having raced in midfield under David Probert, the Churchill colt finished best of all down the outside to score by a neck. Loyal Touch (4/1) was a further length and three-quarters away in third.
The Foxes, who is a three-parts brother to G2 winner Bangkok, was having his first start since finishing ninth in the Listed Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Many A Star (8/1) produced a stirring late charge up the stands’ rail to land the Coral Stewards' Sprint Handicap under Tom Marquand.
Given a break after disappointing at Newmarket last month, Many A Star travelled nicely towards the near side as his rider waited until inside the final furlong to ask his mount for maximum effort.
The five-year-old did not disappoint, edging a head in front of The Lamplighter (16/1) at the line, with Dark Shot (50/1) beaten another short-head in third.
It was a second winner of the week for Paul & Oliver Cole after Royal Scotsman in Thursday’s G2 Richmond Stakes.
I’m A Gambler (18/1) returned to form in style to provide Mark & Charlie Johnston with a second winner of the 2022 Qatar Goodwood Festival.
Having finished down the field in a Newmarket handicap just seven days ago, the three-year-old raced prominently before forging clear in the closing stages to score by a length and three-quarters. Gisburn (33/1) kept on for second, with 5/1 chance Galiac a further half-length away in third.
Ajero (7/2F) broke a run of second-placed finishes by lowering the nine-furlong course record in the concluding Federation Of Bloodstock Agents Handicap.
A five-time winner over hurdles, Ajero had been knocking on the door on the Flat, not least when second in the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot last month.
Dropping back in trip, the Kim Bailey-trained seven-year-old clocked a remarkable time of 1m 52.42s, shaving 0.39secs off a track record that had stood since 1995. Runner-up Kitsune Power (15/2) was a length and a quarter in arrears, with Bolthole (6/1) a neck further back in third.