Hollie Doyle and Nashwa race from last to first for Group One Goodwood glory
A change of tactics and a muddling pace made no difference to Nashwa and Hollie Doyle here on Thursday, as the French Oaks winner added a second Group One win to her record in the Nassau Stakes.
Having won from the front at Chantilly, Doyle was second-last turning into the downhill run for home but with typical composure, she brought the 6-5 favourite with a strong run down the middle of the track and won with enough in hand to start the celebrations a couple of strides from the line.
This was the fourth Group One success of Doyle’s career but it will be a considerable surprise if Nashwa does not add to her tally over the next season-and-a-half. John Gosden, her trainer, was thinking ahead to the Prix de l’Opera and Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf after her latest success, while Imad Alsager, Nashwa’s owner, confirmed that she will stay in training at four.
“It’s amazing to be associated with her and it’s thanks to Imad [who retains Doyle as No 1 rider] that I am,” Doyle said. “Her performance in France was excellent and she had a really hard race, which probably took a bit out of her. Mr Gosden said he wanted me to ride her quiet and get her to switch off, as she’d been a bit keen in her work since France.
“We had options to take on the colts but I can’t see the point at this stage, she’s one of the best fillies around and she’s flourishing with age. Every time I sit on her I say that she’s grown again and improved again, but I think she’ll be a different filly next year as well.”
Dilum, Magic Ring and a subsequent Derby winner, Generous, were among the top-class juveniles to pass through Paul Cole’s hands in the early 1990s and the veteran trainer did not hesitate to place Royal Scotsman alongside or even above them after his one-and-a-half length success in the Richmond Stakes.
Cole, who now trains in partnership with his son, Oliver, last saddled a Group One winner in 2003 when Mr Dinos took the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot but he will hope to bridge the 19-year gap when Royal Scotsman steps up in grade next time, with the Prix Morny at Deauville next month among the options.
“I would say he is at the top,” Cole said. “I’ve had two or three other great horses but leading up to this race he gave me a better vibe. You’re never certain, as anything can happen, but everything went well and I couldn’t comprehend being beaten.”
New London was second-favourite for the Derby before his disappointing second in the Chester Cup in May but he has done little wrong since and is favourite for the St Leger at around 7-2 after his win in the Group Three Gordon Stakes.
Blue For You can shine in Golden Mile
Charlie Appleby’s string could scarcely be in stronger form – the champion trainer has a 36% strike rate over the last fortnight – and his four-year-old gelding Noble Dynasty is sure to start favourite for Friday’s Coral Golden Mile, the big betting race on the fourth day of Glorious Goodwood.
Noble Dynasty won a strong handicap at Newmarket’s July meeting on his seasonal debut and has an ideal draw in stall three, but punters need only look back 12 months for a reminder that this is always one of the most fiercely-contested and unpredictable handicaps of the season.
Appleby’s Path Of Thunder won the same Newmarket handicap as Noble Dynasty before setting off – also from stall three – as the 5-2 favourite for last year’s Golden Mile. He finished 13th of the 18 runners.
A price around 3-1 is much too short for a race of this nature and there are several interesting alternatives at double-figure odds, including Rebel Territory (12-1), last year’s runner-up Rhoscolyn (25-1) and Eilean Dubh (16-1), a narrow winner in a strong time at York last time.
Eilean Dubh also has a good draw in six, but the horse he beat at York – David O’Meara’s Blue For You (3.00) – is 3lb better off for half a length and against the rail in one. He is still in the early stages with O’Meara having joined from Dermot Weld’s yard over the winter and is the clear pick of the prices at around 12-1.
Goodwood 1.50 Withhold went close in this unusual test 12 months ago, finishing less than two lengths behind the winner, and is a couple of pounds lower in the weights this year.
Goodwood 2.25 Bayside Boy, third home in last season’s Dewhurst Stakes, should find this drop into Group Three company in his favour after a decent run in the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot last time.
Goodwood 3.35 Charlie Hills has a decent hand with Khaadem and Equilateral and the six-year-old is marginally preferred at the track where he stormed home in the 2019 Stewards’ Cup.
Goodwood 4.10 Not a vintage renewal of the Glorious Stakes and a fair chance for Fancy Man, fifth under a big weight in the Old Newton Cup Handicap last time, to get off the mark at Group level.
Goodwood 4.45 Felix Natalis showed plenty of improvement on his nursery debut last time and shoud go well under a 6lb penalty.