Billesdon Brook continues on the upgrade
Last Updated: 26/08/17 5:50pm
Billesdon Brook showed the penny has well and truly dropped as she took her form to a new level in the Grosvenor Sport Prestige Stakes at Goodwood.
Although taking four attempts to get off the mark, the daughter of Champs Elysses continued her rise through the ranks when backing up her last time out nursery win at the track in the Group Three contest.
After looking beaten last time out before somehow getting up by a head, the Richard Hannon-trained two-year-old endured a much smoother passage on this occasion, holding the late rally of Whitefountainfairy by three-quarters of a length.
Following the race the 4-1 winner was introduced at 40-1 for next year's Qipco 1000 Guineas by Paddy Power.
Hannon said: "I was very impressed. The fact she quickened past horses that were already quickening at the time was impressive.
"Ryan Moore said he thought when she gets to the front she does just enough and I think she did that there. Sean (Levey) gave her a lovely ride and kept filling her up.
"How we nearly got that beat in a nursery I'll have to ask Sean.
"The May Hill is a possibility. Unfortunately the Moyglare had closed before she won a race, which is typical. I am sure there is something in the pipeline she will take a lot of beating in."
Andrew Balding said of the runner-up: "I am very happy with that. We have not had her that long and she has run like the way she has been working at home. I am sure she can win a Listed race at some point."
Johnny Barnes ended a lean spell stretching back almost two years when scorching clear of his rivals in the Grosvenor Sport Handicap.
The John Gosden-trained five-year-old gained the win his efforts this season had deserved when claiming his first success since landing a Group Three at Deauville in August 30 2015 in the seven-furlong event.
Although forced to take the brave man's route up the inside, the move paid off, with jockey Robert Tart getting a clear passage close to the rail before keeping the son of Acclamation up to his work to score by a length.
Gosden said of the 13-2 winner: "Because it had such a hammering at the main meeting, the ground was loose and rough, so he handled it well.
"He has got a quick digging action and it suited him and he got through on the rail. He never runs a bad race, but he usually runs up the backside of something as he comes from so far back.
"He is in the Ayr Gold Cup. He was unlucky in that last year and he finished about eighth, but never got a run so we will take a look at the Ayr Gold Cup."
Oisin Murphy timed it to perfection as Lightning Spear made it back-to-back wins in the Grosvenor Sport Celebration Mile.
Having hinted his turn was not far away when finishing third in the Sussex Stakes, the six-year-old duly delivered to become just the second horse to claim successive victories in the Group Two.
It looked as though the race was going to go the way of last year's runner-up Zonderland on his long-awaited return, after the Clive Cox runner reeled in leader Hathal late on.
But in one final swoop the David Simcock-trained even-money favourite pipped his old rival on the post, winning by a nose.
Murphy said: "I just about got it right. I made no secret about how tactical the race was going to be. It was impossible to know what was going to happen, but you have to have confidence you have chosen to do the right thing and thankfully I just about got it right.
"Fair play to Sheikh Fahad and David Simcock for persevering with the horse. They got him here in tip-top shape after a heavy ground performance in the Sussex. It was a good performance today.
"I've lived, breathed and dreamt horse racing since I was a child. It's very hard to leave it at the races. Lads say they can leave it behind when they go in the door, but I can't so it's important when it goes right."
David Redvers, racing manager to Sheikh Fahad's Qatar Racing operation, said: "We sponsor the race at Ascot (QEII), but I imagine the Foret (at Chantilly) is a strong possibility. I believe he has a Group One in him and we've always believed he has."
Cox said: "It was close, but he has run a blinder after a year off. I'm pleased with the performance he put up. From where I was I hoped we had held on, but it was a bit like yesterday with the angles at York and sadly we were second.
"He has run a blinder and credit to my team as it has been a long year. I'm thrilled he is back here in good nick. I hope he will go to Ascot. It is a shame he was second, but credit to the winner."
Call To Mind demonstrated that a bright future looks to be in store after when carrying the colours of the Queen to glory in the Goodwood Revival March Stakes.
In an above-average renewal of the Listed prize, the William Haggas-trained son of Galileo produced a display that could see him make an impact in staying races next season.
Despite his mother Memory being a useful sprinter, the son of Galileo showed stamina is very much is his forte when taking a step up to a mile and three-quarters in his stride.
Although sternly challenged late on by Count Octave, the 11-4 chance found plenty for pressure to claim victory by a length and a quarter.
Her Majesty's racing adviser John Warren said: "There is no St Leger. I don't think the trainer is tempted. We will talk to the Queen. William actually thought this would be his last run of the year.
"He wants to look after him for next year to make him a very important horse for next year and he doesn't want to over-race him so he wasn't tempted to have a go.
"If he runs one more time he might run on Arc weekend in the mile-and-seven race (Prix Chaudenay) which will give him a bit more time between now and then."
Andrew Balding, trainer of the runner-up, said: "It was a slightly muddly race for him. He is still learning and has run with credit. He was beaten by a good horse and we will probably keep him in the St Leger for the time being.
"I think he is capable of running a place in the St Leger as he stays well."