Day four of Glorious Goodwood saw a double for Frankie Dettori and big-race success for The Queen - but it was a dash by Battaash that most of a 20,000-plus crowd went home talking about.
Dettori flew to victory - and off his horse in the winner’s enclosure - after guiding Regal Reality to a 10/1 win in the Group 3 Bonhams Thoroughbred Stakes for Sir Michael Stoute.
Dettori completed a double with a 12/1 win on Desert Path in the last, while The Queen’s horse Seniority, 9/2 joint favourite, took the Unibet Golden Mile under Ryan Moore.
But it was the Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned Battaash who was the star of the day, winning the five-furlong King George Qatar Stakes for the second year in a row, and doing it by four lengths, with Sussex jockey Jim Crowley again in the saddle.
Trainer Charlie Hills described the performance by Battaash, who had to carry a 3lb penalty for his Group 1 success in last year’s Prix De L’Abbaye, as ‘a career best’ as he toyed with his rivals in the hot sun.
Battaash won in a time of 56.50sec – 0.49 seconds outside the Goodwood five-furlong record.
Hills said: ‘Battaash broke well and got a nice lead to the first furlong, but he just wanted to go faster and Jim just had to let him go. He is an exceptional horse and I think that could well be a career-best. It was also the best he has behaved in the preliminaries. He has had plenty more racing now and I think he is learning with every run.’
Crowley said: ‘He was a lot more relaxed than last year. I was a bit conscious not to let him wing out of the stalls like last time, I wanted to get a lead. Even Take Cover couldn’t lead him.’
Other Friday winners were Mirage Dancer, Don Armado and Pretty Baby.
Glorious Goodwood concludes today (Saturday) with the Unibet Stewards’ Cup likely to be watched by a sell-out crowd of around 25,000.