Horse Racing

Hollie Doyle Pilots Coventry Stakes Winner To Become Leading Female Rider At Royal Ascot


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Hollie Doyle and Bradsell win the Coventry Stakes

Juvenile Bradsell showed his rivals a clean pair of heels to land a hot renewal of the Group 2 Coventry Stakes in striking fashion on opening day at Royal Ascot, making jockey Hollie Doyle the leading female rider in Royal Ascot history (three wins total).

The son of Tasleet, who looked a superstar when bolting up at York on debut, confirmed the promise of that run by sweeping to the front down the middle of the track. With momentum on his side, Bradsell was able to keep his rivals at arms’ length in the final furlong to land the 2-year-old contest by a length and a half.

The strongly-fancied Persian Force came out of the pack to grab second, with Royal Scotsman a neck further back in third. Sent off an 8/1 chance, £47,000 breeze-up purchase Bradsell, who runs in the colours of Victorious Racing Limited, provided his jockey with a third Royal Ascot winner and trainer Archie Watson with a second.

Doyle said: “It was an impressive performance. Bradsell got squeezed out of the gates, which was frustrating, but to begin with I thought I was drawn on the wrong side. However, once I got into a handy position on the girths of them, I knew the further I went, the better I would go.

“Two furlongs down I was pretty confident as they were all sitting ducks. I just thought ‘let’s go on with this’ and he did it pretty well.

“I have done most of his work at home and the further he goes the better, so I was not too worried that that it was a long way from home when I committed because I knew he’d keep galloping.

“His instant response surprised me, as in his gallops he is a little bit lazy, but he turns it on at the track. He hit the line hard and I struggled to pull him up after.

“Off the back of that performance, the world is his oyster. We have to realise that he is a 12,000gns yearling and a £47,000 breeze-up buy. It just shows no matter what you pay, a good one can bring you here.”

Archie Watson said: “It is the place where all of us want to have winners. I had a third in this race, beaten less than three-quarters of a length and it is just incredible to win it now. He is a very, very good horse.

“I said to my fiancé Brodie last night whatever wins this by daylight will be a superstar, I am delighted it is us!

“I thought the win was full of merit. Early on it looked like the near side was well ahead, I was a bit worried we were out on the wing with nothing to lead us there.

“I said to Hollie before to try and get them to take you as far forward in the race as you can before you press the button. She pushed it two down and it was plenty far enough to go!

“He won nicely and it is just incredible. I’m delighted for the whole team, delighted for the owners, Victorious Racing, who bought him. It means the world to all of us.

“He was bought by Tom Biggs [Blandford Bloodstock], he is the genius who bought him. I am very lucky to train the horse he selects.

“He has won his Group 2, he has won the best Group 2, so he’ll go to the Phoenix Stakes or the Prix Morny. If he is to run before I should imagine it might be the Prix Robert Papin, but I am not sure he needs to do that.”

Richard Hannon said of Persian Force: “I’m delighted. He ran a super race, he just ran around a little bit. We came here to see if we had a very good horse, and we have, which is the main thing.

“There’s a big difference between first and second, but he’s still a champion in my eyes and it’s up to the horse to prove that. He’s run an extremely good race and I’m very proud of him. Tomorrow morning we’ll build towards the next race.”

Oliver Cole said of the third: “Royal Scotsman ran really well. He probably did a bit too much in front and the winner has come past us and nicked two lengths off us, and we probably used our two lengths too early. He had too much daylight, basically.”

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