Frankel’s festival mission complete

Tom Queally steers Frankel to a six-length victory in yesterday's Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood
Tom Queally steers Frankel to a six-length victory in yesterday's Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood
Markov and jockey Tom Bellamyon their way to victory. Picture: Fontwell Park

Honeyball hat-trick lights up Fontwell

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Jockey Tom Queally admitted he’s never had it so ‘easy’ after steering Frankel to a second successive Sussex Stakes crown.

The unbeaten four-year-old became the first champion ever to retain the Group 1 Goodwood title after a stunning six-length victory on the South Downs.

As expected, the Sir Henry Cecil-trained colt proved a class apart from his three rivals yesterday – including stable-mate pacemaker Bullet Train, who made all the early running.

And he justified his 1/20 pre-race favourite’s tag by easing into the front with two furlongs to go to leave the competition for dead.

Godolphin’s Farhh, always seen as his likely closest challenger, came through to finish half-a-dozen lengths behind in second.

Meanwhile, Gabrial never looked like keeping pace.

The win now sets Frankel – the world’s top-rated race horse – up nicely for a trip to York and the Juddmonte International on Wednesday, August 22.

That will be his first try over the longer 10-furlong distance.

But Queally admits he’s already looking forward to the challenge and sharing another ‘special moment’ with a horse boasting a 12 from 12 winning record.

‘Every moment spent on his back is a special moment and yesterday was no different,’ said Queally.

‘He’s amazing. He had all the other horses cooked just after halfway and it was a nice prep for his next race.

‘He’s a class apart from anything else at the moment.

‘He does it all very easily, therefore, I have a very easy job. All I have to do is steer.

‘These are magic moments and it’s great to be part of it.’

Queally’s ecstasy was echoed by Teddy Grimthorpe, owner Prince Khalid Abdullah’s racing manager.

He admitted the race went according to plan.

‘It was set up really, really well,’ said Grimthorpe.

‘Bullet Train went a nice gallop for him and he just increased when he needed to.

‘Tom let him roll down the hill and then let out a few inches of rein, then he just quickened as he does, which is so fantastic.

‘He put it to bed in a few strides, which is him.

‘It’s a pleasure to watch him.

‘Henry and everyone at Warren Place have done a fantastic job. It’s been a great effort to get him spot on.’

Elsewhere on day two of the festival, Olympic Glory (11/4) produced an astonishing late run to give trainer Richard Hannon his third successive triumph in the Veuve Clicquot Vintage Stakes, with Richard Hughes on board.

Later, Hannon and Hughes paired up again for victory in the British Stallion Studs Turf Club EBF Fillies Stakes with 16/1 shot My Queenie.

However, they weren’t the only ones to score a double, with Mark Johnston teaming up with jockey Joe Fanning for two successes.

Hurricane Higgins (14/1) took the Goodwood Stakes, before Sir Graham Wade (14/1) comfortably took the UBS Stakes.

Pearl Sea (11/8) won the Markel Insurance Maiden Fillies’ Stakes, ridden by Jamie Spencer, while the Harwoods Racing Club Handicap Stakes was taken by Cathy Gannon on The Confessor.