Richard Hughes (pictured) has won Group One races all over the world, and last season secured a first Flat jockeys’ championship. But until today he had never won a British Classic race.
He corrected that omission from his CV on Sky Lantern, who he threaded through the pack to take the QIPCO 1000 Guineas at Newmarket by half a length from Just The Judge.
“It’s about time!” said a slightly emotional Hughes.
Sky Lantern, trained by Hughes’ father-in-law Richard Hannon, won the Group One Moyglare Stud Stakes last year as a two-year-old. However, she only finished second to the Sir Henry Cecil-trained Hot Snap in the Nell Gwyn Stakes over the 1000 course and distance last month.
But she showed real tenacity to battle Just The Judge, trained by Charles Hills, and the Ed McMahon-trained Winning Express inside the final furlong.
“They didn’t go overfast, but it was about getting her going smoothly and getting plenty of cover. She loves that fast ground and she was tough to stick her neck out on the line,” he said.
Sky Lantern, a daughter of Red Clubs, who died prematurely after siring only two crops, was bred in Ireland by Tally-Ho Stud and is owned by Mr B Keswick.
Moth, trained by Aidan O’Brien, was third, two and a half lengths behind Just The Judge. The 9-2 favourite Hot Snap could only finish ninth.