TOM MARQUAND believes Billesdon Brook gives him a ‘live chance’ of riding a maiden Group One winner in the Qatar Nassau Stakes at Glorious Goodwood.
The 20-year-old partners this year’s 1000 Guineas heroine in the £600,000 feature race today (3.35pm).
Marquand takes the reins on the Richard Hannon-trained three-year-old in the 1m 2f contest, which forms part of the QIPCO British Champions Series, as usual rider, Sean Levey, is on the sidelines because of a shoulder injury.
Billesdon Brook meets five rivals, including Lockinge Stakes winner Rhododendron.
And the 2015 champion apprentice feels the daughter of Champs Elysees has a solid chance of landing the Nassau.
Marquand said: ‘I’ve not really gone into a Group One with a proper, live chance like this before. I’ve ridden in seven or eight Group Ones and they certainly ride different.
‘They are extremely competitive and nobody gets an inch, and there’s good reason because it’s the best horses going into the best races. Ultimately, it’s not just the fact that you are winning a Group One but everything that comes from winning one. It’s what everybody is focused on.
‘Billesdon Brook has always been a lovely, straightforward filly and is the sort of horse that you turn up for every day to try to get the ride on.
‘At Goodwood, and over a mile and a quarter, she’s going to have even more speed up her sleeve.’