Eastern Aria Gets Johnston Off The Mark at Goodwood

A victory for Eastern Aria has Mark Johnston finally off the mark at Glorious Goodwood when she ran out a impressive winner of the Moet Hennessy Fillies' Stakes, breaking the course record over a mile and six furlongs.

Mark Johnston

Mark Johnston

Early on in the straight jockey Richard Hills picked up the pace and the outcome never seemed doubtful.

Polly's Mark tried to challenge but never really got close, with the winning distance of two and three-quarter lengths, with third place getter Motrice two and a half lengths further back.

Hills said, "They went fast and I just slotted in where she was happy. "When I picked her up at the top of the hill we weren't sure she'd stay but I rode her like she did stay and I was really pleased the way she picked up.

"She's got a great attitude and has obviously just come right."

Johnston said, "I've run a lot of my big guns in the handicaps and it's a nice surprise to get my first winner in a Group race instead.

"She was the most improved horse in my yard last season and I gave her a lot of big entries, but we ended up having to scrap them.

"Richard rides her very well because she can be quite difficult.

"It looks like I'll have to get the programme book out again now.

"Long term, the Canadian International may be the plan."

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