GBI RACING

5 things we learned on day three of Royal Ascot

Shang Shang Shang (left) holds off Pocket Dynamo in the Norfolk Stakes

Ward relieved as Shang hangs on

Wesley Ward had grounds to wonder on Wednesday whether his love affair with Royal Ascot was on the rocks, but Shang Shang Shang showed it was as strong as ever when winning the Norfolk Stakes, albeit by the minimum margin. The American trainer has been bringing a team of horses to the meeting regularly since Strike The Tiger struck in 2009. He has now had 10 winners and he cannot believe why other US trainers do not follow his example.

Rosario not quite flying

Joel Rosario with the winning team following Shang Shang Shang's win
Joel Rosario with the winning team following Shang Shang Shang’s win (John Walton/PA)

Joel Rosario may be a world-class rider, but he has yet to perfect the flying dismount, demonstrated so brilliantly by Frankie Dettori. Trainer Wesley Ward requested the 33-year-old American-based rider emulate Dettori should he win on Shang Shang Shang. When he did, Rosario obliged but he has something to work on as it lacked technique. Last time, Rosario had a Royal Ascot winner, he took the train. He travelled by taxi on this occasion.

Moore milestone

Princess Beatrice presents Ryan Moore with a memento of his 50th Royal Ascot winner
Princess Beatrice presents Ryan Moore with a memento of his 50th Royal Ascot winner (Steve Parsons/PA)

In what is turning out to be a week of landmark victories, Ryan Moore took his tally to 50 when steering Hunting Horn home in the Hampton Court Stakes, 10 years after he opened his account on Colony in the King George Handicap. The three-times champion jockey has been leading rider at the meeting seven times in the last eight years and only Frankie Dettori is ahead of him among the current jockeys. He quickly made it 51 on Magic Wand in the Ribblesdale Stakes and is likely to have many more.

Dettori pulls the strings

Frankie Dettori lapping up the acclaim following his Gold Cup success
Frankie Dettori lapping up the acclaim following his Gold Cup success (John Walton/PA)

Frankie Dettori pulled all the strings on Ladies’ Day as only he knows how when winning the biggest race of the week, the Gold Cup, on Stradivarius. The popular Italian milked the applause as he first paraded his winner and then brought him back to the winner’s enclosure to a rapturous reception. It was Dettori’s sixth triumph in the stayers’ championship and his 60th Royal Ascot winner in all.

Johnston bags another winner

Baghdad triumphs in the centre for Andrea Atzeni
Baghdad triumphs in the centre for Andrea Atzeni (John Walton/PA)

Mark Johnston is ‘Mr Reliable’ at providing winners for the North at Royal Ascot and the Middleham trainer did not let the side down as he took the King George V Handicap for a sixth time with Baghdad and his total tally at the meeting to 42. Johnston saddled six horses in the mile-and-a-half contest and admitted that he did not know which was the best of six before the race and for most of the time during it. In the end it was a son of the mighty Frankel that came out on top.

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