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William Buick enjoyed a fine day at Ascot
William Buick enjoyed a fine day at Ascot

Adayar lands Ascot showpiece

Jockey William Buick said it was a "privilege" to ride Adayar on Saturday, after he became the first horse since Galileo 20 years ago to win both the Derby and the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.

Adayar turned in an outstanding performance at Ascot to see off rivals Mishriff and Love, as Buick capped off a superb day for himself, with victory in the showpiece following earlier triumphs on board New Science and Danyah. 

It was Buick's second success in the race, after guiding Nathaniel home in 2011 and he was virtually lost for words afterwards. 

He told ITV: "I'm speechless to be honest. He gives you the feel of endless power and it's a privilege to ride a horse like this because they don't come around very often. 

"It was a very simple race to ride once he dropped his head and when I picked him up, he was instant and relentless until the line." 

Broome made the early running, before Mishriff came to the fore but they could not live with Adayar, who overpowered the small field to win by a length-and-three-quarters in the end. 

Mishriff was a gallant second, while Love, despite being pre-race favourite, came in a disappointing third out of five, with the field reduced earlier in the day when David Menuisier withdrew Wonderful Tonight when the forecast rain failed to arrive. 

Adayar's win provided Charlie Appleby with his first success in the big Ascot contest, although the Godolphin trainer was not present on Saturday to witness it as he had been pinged by the NHS app. 

Appleby is now expected to weigh up where to take Adayar next, with the St Leger at Doncaster in September and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at ParisLongchamp the following month both on the list of possible destinations. 

Gosden proud of Mishriff's exploits

Despite finishing second, trainer John Gosden was happy with Mishriff's display in the King George on Saturday. 

Gosden admitted to being worried about Mishriff's chances pre-race when he caught sight of eventual victor Adayar in the pre-parade ring.

But he was delighted with how Mishriff coped nonetheless. 

He said: "It was a super race. I've been lucky enough to win it with Nathaniel, Taghrooda and Enable as three-year-olds, they get a lot of weight. I said it again after the Eclipse when it was 10lb and here it was 11lb, it's a lot. 

"Ours has run an absolute blinder, but the winner is a rapidly improving colt. I thought he looked magnificent in the pre-parade ring." 

Gosden says Mishriff will now go to the Juddmonte International at York on August 10th, where he could come up against Love again, as well as the likes of St Mark's Basilica, Snowfall and Palace Pier. 

King George Qatar Stakes field takes shape 

Battaash is eyeing King George glory
Battaash is eyeing King George glory

Battaash looks set to take on a maximum 15 rivals as he chases a fifth successive King George Qatar Stakes victory at Goodwood on Friday, including the dangerous Glass Slippers and Dragon Symbol. 

All three were named among the six-day confirmations for Friday's Group Two contest as Charlie Hills' charge eyes yet another victory in the race. 

Kevin Ryan's Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint star Glass Slippers is back for more after finishing runner-up last year, while Archie Watson's talented three-year-old Dragon Symbol - who has posted second-place finishes in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot and the July Cup at Newmarket previously - was also included. 

David Griffiths' Ornate and John Quinn's pair of Liberty Beach and Keep Busy are also still in the mix at this stage, as are Tim Easterby's duo, Winter Power and Art Power. 

Lee has high hopes for Sole Pretender 

Norman Lee has talked up Sole Pretender's chances in the Galway Hurdle next week, going as far as saying he's the "best horse he's ever had by a long way". 

The seven-year-old has won twice already this year - at Cork and Tipperary - while he was a creditable fifth in the Champion Stayers Hurdle at Punchestown at the end of April. 

Lee says Sole Pretender, who was fifth when top weight in the Galway Hurdle in 2019, is in fantastic shape and he cannot wait to unleash him on Thursday. 

Lee told the Racing Post: "It's all systems go for Thursday. He did his last piece of work this morning [Saturday] and it went great. 

"We couldn't be happier with him. He's in the form of his life. He's the best horse we've ever had by a long way and I think he's better now than he was two years ago when he was fifth in it."

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