Roger Varian had a problem. And it wasn’t one of those easy ones either. Stable jockey Andrea Atzeni was required to ride Galadriel for his retained owner Sheikh Mohammed Obaid. So he had to find another jockey, to ride the favorite (Daahyeh) at the royal meeting.
It seems it was David Egan’s lucky day. It had been his birthday a couple of days earlier and his present arrived on four legs. The nephew of champion jockey Richard Hughes was the top apprentice jockey in 2017 but he wanted to make his mark at the top early and the perfect opportunity lined up.
Egan scorched to victory aboard Sheikh Nasser Bin Hamad Al Khalifa's Daahyeh in the Gr.3 Albany Stakes. Ken Condon's Irish challenger Celtic Beauty briefly challenged him but Egan never let it rattle him. Daahyeh won by length and a half while Aroha finished third.
Gr.1 King Edward VII Stakes
Irishman Aidan O'Brien clocked his 70th winner when his charge Japan crossed the finish line.
The son of Galileo, powered clear of favourite Bangkok who finished second, while Eagles By Day was third.
After an applauded third place in the Derby much was expected. And he exceeded expectations to take first place with aplomb. O'Brien is likely to be considering the 4YO for a tilt at Europe's richest race – Gr.1 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe later in the year.
Gr.1 Commonwealth Cup
Phoenix Thoroughbreds owner Amer Abdulaziz has grand plans for his investment fund. And his success of Ascot is proof of the amazing success he has had in plotting his course.
Phoenix landed a remarkable 1-2 in the Gr.1 Commonwealth Cup with Gr.1 Phoenix Stakes (2018) winner Advertise crossing the wire first under champion jockey Frankie Dettori, followed by Forever In Dreams in the colours of the Phoenix Ladies. "That's just the way we like it," Abdulaziz said to Bloodhorse. "What a beautiful day; it could not have gone better. We knew the horse was doing great and working well, and to have him here today and win like that is amazing.
Jabber Abdulla owned 3YO, Hello Youmzain came in third.
Gr.1 Coronation Stakes
Francis Graffard trained-Watch Me romped to victory under Pierre-Charles Boudot in the Gr.1 Coronation Stakes. As the field turned into the straight, dual Group One, One Thousand Guineas winnerHermosa put her nose to the ground to complete the trinity of early season Group One Classics for fillies.
With a furlong and a half, Boudot kicked the Olympic Glory filly into a fifth gear, powering a length and a half clear for an emphatic success with Sir Michael Stoute’s Jubiloso a further length behind under jockey James McDonald
Sandringham Stakes (Handicap)
Hayley Turner made history when she rode Thanks Be to victory 30 years after Gay Kelleway won at the Royal Meeting. She is the second female jockey in history to stand in the winner’s enclosure.
Charlie Fellowes-trained Mukhadram filly denied a royal success for runner-up Magnetic Charm by just a neck. Ed Walker’s Hotsy Totsy came in third.
It was nearly four years ago that Turner announced her retirement from the saddle after a career that included group 1 success on Dream Ahead in the 2011 Gr.1 July Cup and Margot Did in the Gr.1 Nunthorpe Stakes a month later. But she just couldn’t keep away. She returned to race riding last year.
The win was not without drama, however. Turner's winning ride earned her a nine-day suspension and £1,600 fine for using her whip above the permitted level inside the final furlong and a half.
Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes (Handicap)
Ryan Moore whose day wasn’t as fantastic as he had originally envisioned, finally rode a winner in the last race under Baghdad. Successful over the C&D in the King George V Stakes (2018), the
son of Frankel, forged clear inside the final furlong when he was given a ‘Royal’ scare by the inspired Dettori with Ben Vrackie who was runner-up. Fujaira Prince was third, with Corgi fourth.
Baghdad's trainer, Mark Johnston, had some hair raising moments, “Oh, I was worried in the finish. For sure, I was worried—the form of Mr. Dettori this week, and he was coming fast," he said. "We had to go wide round the bend, and I wouldn't have imagined Ryan was totally happy with his position, but he had to commit to make sure he got a clear run."
Johnston, trains Baghdad for Mohammed Bin Hamad Khalifa Al Attiya.