The resurgence of Rebel’s Romance continued apace at Goodwood as Charlie Appleby’s one-time Belmont Stakes contender landed the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Glorious Stakes.
Winner of the UAE Derby on dirt last year, connections had some of America’s biggest prizes in their sights. But injury prevented him from making the trip.
He disappointed in two runs at Meydan earlier this year, but got back to winning ways last time out in beating stablemate Kemari at Newmarket and he beat the same rival once again on the famous Downs.
Sent off the 4-5 favourite, William Buick drove him out to a one-length victory with Fancy Man another length and three-quarters back in third.
Assistant trainer Alex Merriam said: “It was a nice professional race, he just sits in and he’s seen it out well. They could have ideally gone a bit faster for him, but once he got rolling he picked up and did it well.
“That’s only his second run on turf, Charlie brought him back and it seems to have worked well. I spoke to Charlie and he said that was the target, he’s seen it out well and we could step him up to a mile and six (furlongs).
“Stepping up is definitely a possibility but staying at a mile and a half is too, I’m sure Charlie will have a plan.”
He added of the runner-up: “He’s a nice horse, he’s a horse with plenty of ability. He’s got a nice lead in front and kept on galloping away. He might be one for a step up in trip.”
Buick said: “He has never been on a track like this. Full credit to him, he stays very well. They didn’t go overly quick, he has battling qualities and stays very well. He is a horse who should get further.
“It’s great to come to these festival meetings. It’s tough. Godolphin and Charlie Appleby have high expectations and nice horses to run in the right races, I’m privileged to ride them.”
Richard Hannon was pleased with Fancy Man, saying: “He’s run a nice race in his race before the Ebor and he will definitely get further. He could be a Melbourne Cup horse one day.”
Emma Lavelle saddled a rare Flat runner at Glorious Goodwood and came away victorious as Master Milliner held off his pursuers in the Coral Goodwood Handicap over the marathon trip of an extended two and a half miles.
Lavelle, a prominent National Hunt trainer best known for her handling of star staying hurdler Paisley Park, was having just her 11th runner on the level this season.
Crucially, though, she was having her third winner – and the second provided by this six-year-old.
Sean Levey made a bold bid for home some way out on Master Milliner (14-1) and that proved a wise move as the well-backed Super Superjack was closing with every stride, but having been checked in his run he just ran out of time and failed by three-quarters of a length.
Lavelle said: “He’s just been an absolute pleasure – a fantastic flag-bearer, it’s his eighth win. He’s a star.
“He was a bit flat at Ascot, but he ran well at York. He only does as much as he has to and is a handicapper’s nightmare.
“It looked like he didn’t stay at Ascot, but he was wrong.
“He loves this track where the twists and turns keep him interested – and I thought Sean gave him a peach.”
Levey smiled: “I don’t normally ride over this trip – it is a lot of fun, but it is also a long way!”