Mustashry powers to Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes success
18 May 2019
Six-year-old gelding provides Sir Michael Stoute with an eighth triumph in the mile feature.
Mustashry with his connections, including groom Jade Ransley, after winning the Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes. Photo: Ian Headington / Racingfotos.com
Taking trainer Sir Michael Stoute’s record tally in this mile feature to eight, the Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned six-year-old landed a first Group One after just one previous attempt, with retained jockey Jim Crowley in the saddle.
Ostilio was soon setting the pace in the QIPCO British Champions Series contest, with star filly Laurens keeping him company and Mustashry well in touch.
There were plenty in with chances two furlongs out, before Mustashry and Laurens looked to fight out the finish.
Mustashry (9-1) got on top just inside the final furlong and pulled clear to win by two and a half lengths.
— Champions Series (@ChampionsSeries) May 18, 2019
Accidental Agent stayed on well to claim third place, half a length away, with Ken Condon’s Irish challenger Romanised running well in fourth, just ahead of the Aidan O’Brien-trained Le Brivido.
Stoute said: “We knew this horse was in very good shape and I have to confess that it’s Jade (Ransley) who has made this horse – she rides him and has looked after him from the very start.
“He’s had his niggles, but I’ve never had him better than today.
“The Queen Anne is the race that comes to my mind, while remembering he is versatile and has won over a mile and a quarter.
“But I think the Queen Anne is what Sheikh Hamdan wants.”
Crowley said: “He beat a good filly into second, and he now feels like a proper horse, having won over seven, a mile and a mile and a quarter.”
Karl Burke is eyeing a rematch with the winner at Royal Ascot for Laurens.
The North Yorkshire trainer said: “I was delighted with her run, she lost her lead, but then in the last 50 yards got her second wind and stayed on again, so I’m sure there’s some improvement in her. She will go for the Queen Anne next and it will be fillies’ only (races) after that.”